Brian and I have been wanting to take a sailing tour up the Barcelona coastline, and since Tina was visiting it seemed like the perfect opportunity! So we got up relatively early after our jam-packed Sunday and headed for the port down by the Rambla.
I think I've mentioned that we live on the same street as the Palau de la Musica Catalana so there are often a few tourists milling about snapping photos. Well, nothing prepared us for all these little munchkins! It must have been official class field trip day because the streets in front of the Palau were bustling with chattering, giggling, squealing little kiddos all paired off and dutifully holding hands with their assigned buddy. Tina captured this oh-so-perfect shot of the chaos. I love the sign for the "Petit Palau" in the background too. Cuties.
(Photo credit: Kristina Bagge)
After breakfast in the plaza near the Gothic Cathedral and an impromptu shopping stop where I finally found a cropped black jacket (yay!), we headed for our 12:30pm boat tour. We can always count on ol' Cristóbal Colón...the boat is that way.
Tina with Montjuic in the background. I think we were actually trying to get those weird oblong arch things, but I felt obligated to point out Montjuic since it's the actual landmark. ;)
Unfortunately the sail boat tours were closed for the low season, so we ended up on this double decker. No pasa nada, we figured the coastline would look the same either way.
We snagged a seat on the side on the upper deck and bundled up!
All aboard! So long puerto! (And don't try to rub that spot off your screen to the right of ol' Cristobal...it's just a bird. I think I almost wounded my poor screen before I realized it. Ha!
See the funicular car above our heads? Brian and I are putting that on the to-do list for March. It goes from Montjuic to the port and back. I think you can even eat dinner up there.
Brian decided this was the Pinta returning from the Americas. We were a bit jealous of their awesome sail boat.
Hello W! We finally got to see her other side.
Barceloneta...this is where we usually lay on the beach.
Our two favorite Barcelona churches: Tibidabo and the Sagrada Familia. Spoiler alert! We may just have finally made it to Tibidabo while Tina was in town!
I love those happy little heads.
(Photo credit: Kristina Bagge)
(Photo credit: Kristina Bagge)
There were two options when booking our boat tour - the short version for 45 minutes and the long version for 90 minutes. We opted for the longer one. In the words of Julia Roberts... Big mistake, huge. While it was absolutely gorgeous seeing the Barcelona coastline, we were all a bit green about 30 minutes into the journey. And the boat basically just went 45 minutes up the coast and then turned around to head back for the second half. So you saw the same sights, only now you felt nauseous looking at them.
Which is why we headed downstairs to the glassed-in lower deck... no freezing, cold wind and a chance to catch our breath hopefully.
There was lots of watch checking on the second half of the trip. And just when we thought we were turning into the port, they faked us out and continued down the coast a few minutes to pass Montjuic. We all three groaned in unison and I think maybe used a few words that would make our mothers blush. "Get me off this $%@!#* boat NOW" was a refrain heard quite regularly from our crew in those last 30 minutes.
Once we kissed the ground and decided we weren't going to throw up, we wandered up the Rambla to find a good lunch spot and to take in a few supremely Barcelona sights. Street performers dot this famous street asking for money in exchange for photos with them in their wild get-ups. I had seen this guy before on one of my solo days and had been wanting Brian to see him too. I wanted to get a closer look, but we were all so seasick and hungry that I just snapped this rogue photo from my purse sans donation. I'm sorry Mother Kharma!
Get it? Baguetina... Bagge, Tina. Tee hee. She has a pic like this from the first time she lived in Spain so this was the sequel. I think she looks oh-so-guapa!
Tina's fave umbrella building...
What would a stroll down the Rambla be without a stop in the famous Boqueria market? The only stipulation was Brian made us promise we would NOT visit the seafood section. I was still swaying a little bit so I was a-okay with that agreement.
Hello meat! I imagined these little Spanish ladies were talking about whether or not they should get the cow tongue or the pig face for their special dinner that night. I celebrated my one-year anniversary being a vegetarian this week, but I still love looking at these meat stalls in the markets. It's kind of that sick fascination thing where you know you're going to be grossed out but you can't help but look.
These lemons made me think of my big sis Lacy for some reason. So bright and yellow and sunshiney. I could see her using them as inspiration for her
(fabulous by the way) or something of the sort. These are for you sis!
After the market we finally decided on lunch at Dos Trece in the Raval. We had grand plans of heading up to Tibidabo afterwards, but it seemed like too much of an effort and the weather had started to get a little chilly. So we wandered into H&M on our walk back home. Apparently socks with high heels are in for this spring. Um, no.
What I will NOT be wearing this spring. (Aside from Tina's cute sweater on the far left that we searched all over Barcelona for and FINALLY found at the third Zara.) Is it freaking anyone else out that these girls are quintuplets?
We finally made it back to the piso and all plopped down in exhaustion. I'm pretty sure there was another nap this evening, but I can't be sure because the week is already starting to blur together. What I do remember clearly is that Brian prepared a fine feast of Tex-Mex style breakfast tacos for dinner using the tortillas and salsa Tina had brought us. It was amaaaazing!
Post-dinner the three of us crowded around the computer (of course the DVD player wouldn't play the DVD...so Spanish) and watched L'Auberge Espanole. We had asked Tina to bring it since it was about a French student studying abroad in Barcelona for his masters in business. I had seen it when I returned from Spain in 2002 and had absolutely adored it. And it didn't disappoint! It was so fun to see our beloved city on the big screen (well, my laptop screen.)
After the movie, it was bedtime. Brian had school early Tuesday morning and Tina and I had a big day planned of Gaudi, Gaudi and more Gaudi!