Ah Barcelona, we barely knew ye

Barcelona was the starting point of our family trip to Spain the last two weeks of May 2010.  We had an overnight flight from Minneapolis to Amsterdam and a couple of hours later we got on a flight to Barcelona.  So exciting to be back in Europe again!! It was my husband’s and then 10 year old daughter’s first experience in Europe.  We had a blast travelling all over Spain.  I wish we had spent more time in this lovely city on the Mediterranean.  When I lived in Madrid as a student, I never did visit Barcelona. I passed through the train station on my way to Italy but never got to see Barcelona.  So, it was a good starting point for our two week adventure.

I did alot of research and planning for this trip, along with brushing up on my Spanish which I barely used at all over the 30 years since I was in Spain last. I am happy to report that the language skills brush-up worked out really well! In fact, I guess it worked so well that people there thought I was Spanish. So many of them asked me directions or asked me to take their picture and the lady in the Granada train station asking me where the end of the line was, all in Spanish. The funniest exchange was on our last night in Spain. We were admiring a human statue when a tourist approached me to ask me something. He began in English but stopped abruptly and said to me “do you speak English?” He was American and he too thought I was Spanish!  He also said that I looked as if I could go either way. That was so much fun.  And the planning part of the trip, that didn’t go as well. Read on for one example.

I had planned it so that we would be able to see the sardana danced in front of the cathedral at noon the next day, our first full day in Barcelona.  We got in late afternoon on a Saturday, in time to get a good night’s sleep and get to the cathedral by noon.  Ah, the best laid plans of mice and men. What happened was that we apparently had to catch up on our sleep because we all slept through the alarm and awoke at 1 p.m. the following day, completely missing the sardana!  Fer crying out loud!!  So, next time perhaps eh?  Below are some of the highlights of our entirely too short two and a half days in this charming city full of history, art, architecture and more.  Do visit Barcelona if you get a chance!!

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16 Comments

Filed under Barcelona, Spain

16 responses to “Ah Barcelona, we barely knew ye

  1. Yes, I have fond memories of Barcelona as well: the (caged :-( birds for sale along the ramblas, a great circus that netted me the largest circus poster I ever had, and the Sagrada Familia church. If they ever finish it people won’t recognize it without the cranes and scaffolding!! Great pictures, Toby! Thanks for taking me, too, down memory-lane!

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  3. What a great place to start getting to know Europe for your family (I’m a little biased though!). How cool that your Spanish is still so good. It looks like you guys got to see a lot of the sights. Too bad you have to come back to see the sardana. :)

    • he he, not surprised at all that you’re biased ;) I was given a link to a site that lists where the sardana is danced all over Barcelona, not just in front of the cathedral and other days of the week. but, yes, our next trip will include seeing the sardana danced in Barcelona!! I can’t wait! thanks!

  4. monidew

    love these – I’m especially fond of the second picture

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  6. Susan’s blog led me to yours. My husband also wants to retire in Spain. Two years ago we started our serious research and we are spending 3-4 weeks in Spain each summer. Last year we spent it in and around Barcelona. 10 days in Barcelona was great and 1 week in an apartment in Tossa del Mar and a couple of days further north. This year we are going to los pueblos blancos, North Africa, Sevilla, Malaga and a resort on the beach. We are doing immersion. When we lived in Germany we spend almost a month each summer in Spain to recharge my solar battery, I am from Texas and I need a lot of sun. My name is Elsa and I met Susan at Hartnell where we both teach part-time. When I get our pictures up on a picture sharing site I will send you a link. I don’t think we missed any of Guadit or Dali’s musuems. Dali’s last residence and the town was amazing and worth the drive north.

    • wow! that’s great that you’re able to go to Spain for several weeks each year. We’re going back too but probably in a couple of years. I’d love to see your pictures! Nice to meet you Elsa and thanks for your comments :)

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  8. I’m heading to Barcelona at the end of June but only for an overnight stay. Thought I’d check out your blog for ideas on what to do while there.

    • Cool!! Tho one night in Barcelona isn’t enough time. Hopefully you will love it enough to want to go back to see more. I know I did!! I look forward to hearing about your experiences there. Do you know about Jessica’s blog? She’s an expat living in Barcelona and has all kinds of stuff on her blog, you should check it out. Enjoy!!

      here’s the link: http://holayessica.com/

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