I finished class on Thursday around 2pm and began the 30 minute wait until the next bus would arrive to take me home. This job is wonderful–I get all Friday’s off to explore the city of Madrid and can use long weekends to my advantage. In the United States, Monday was Columbus Day, in Spain, October 12 is the Dia de la Hispanidad (understand: no school on Monday and 4 days weekend). Realizing I had no plans or very loose ones, I went against my nature and decided to go to Barcelona on a whim. By 9am on Friday I was in a BlaBla Car (yes, this is actually its real name and its a real thing) with two strangers and a new friend making the 5 hour journey to this coastal city. Enter controversy.
See, here’s the thing about planning–it means you have an actual plan! Jared (my new Madrid friend) and I arrived in Barcelona with no hostel, hotel, or airbnb (read: raven freaks out about being homeless in Barcelona). This should not be a problem, ordinarily, there are tons of places to stay in Barcelona very cheap. WRONG. Apparently with it being a holiday weekend and U2 coming to town for a concert 98% of every possible living place was booked for the weekend. And this is why people plan. Attempting to be an optimistic traveller, I did not throw anything while we frantically tried to book a place to live for the next three days. After 2 hours of searching and a favor phoned in from s friend. We had a place to stay just for the night. A hostel an hour out of the city that cost $12 a person (read: shitty place to stay where you may get bed bugs and you are afraid of foot fungus in the shower). We arrived with bags in tow mostly just satisfied for shelter for the night. We stowed our things and headed to the beach. Two bottles of wine and a drunken dinner conversation with 3 Argentinian men later and you really don’t notice exactly how strange it is to sleep in a hostel with 12 other strangers. The night passed mostly without event except for being awoken at 1am because I was sleeping in bed #12 instead of my assigned bed #8. I find great humor in being yelled at in a language in which I’m a novice. Save your oxygen man!
Fortunately, we found another hostel for our 2nd and third nights in Barcelona. Although more expensive, we had a wonderful setup–private room for 6 with a balcony overlooking a pleasant street and in walking distance of major attractions.
With our new comfortable accommodations, Jared and I began to explore the city itself. Joined by a friend of a friend (I love those ‘it’s a small world connections’) we decided to hit “da club“. Normally not a club goer, a night of dancing in Barcelona sounded like a great idea while on vacation. Plus, I love saying we went to “da club” last night. Although my night at “da club” is a story for another day, my favorite part of the night had to be leaving “da club” for a nighttime walk on the beach. We were only offered cocaine once. Beautiful 🙂
Barcelona was so very good to me. The Sagrada Familia is a wonderfully ornate church different from any other I’ve ever encountered. Beside it is a park with artists and street performers trying to convert their talents to cash. Las Ramblas. The beach. Da club. Thanks, Barcelona. See you soon!