Home from Spain. The trip………was………hm. Good? I think. Yeah, it was good. It just had a lot of shitty things happen too. Lets start from the beginning.
In order to get to Gatwick, we had to take the Tube to a bus station and then a bus to the airport. Naturally, we missed our bus. Wonderful. We got on the next one that arrived 20 minutes later, but we lost £10 in the process. The bus ride took for ever, and eventually we got there and Gatwick is SUCH a confusing airport, we had to rush all over the place to find our things, and it culminated in us BARELY getting to our plane. This was not a good start.
We touched down in Spain about 2 hours later (3, if you include the time difference), and right from the start, having Katie there (who spoke fluent Spanish, thank JESUS) was a wonderful idea. Very few people that we came across could “habla Inglés.” And whenever I found myself trying to say something in Spanish (like, “my Spanish is bad, can you speak English please”), it would come out something like “Mein Español ist muy mal, habla Englisch, bitte?” Apparently, the knowledge of German within my brain was conquering and occupying my knowledge of Spanish. It would have been much more fitting had it been French. Seeing as no one spoke Deutschañol, I was completely useless to the team (as were the 4 others of the 6 of us). At least Katie got practice.
We took a bus from Girona (which, despite being Barcelona’s airport, is a 2 hour’s drive from the actual city) and arrived in downtown Barcelona at some point within the hour of 10pm. It was at that point that we realized that our hostel was on the COMPLETE opposite side of the city. So we hopped on the Metro (which was fun, as it was IN SPANISH) and managed to get to the general area of where we were supposed to go. Then we walked up 534 hills to get to the place, and finally we got there. And it was so glorious to be in the place, but as soon as we got there, we left again because we were starving and the only food was AT THE BOTTOM OF THE HILL. Luckily we discovered stairs.
We ate at this awesome pizza place, because like London, Barcelona shuts down at 10 and it was the only place open, besides a grocery store (which we also went to). After that, we went straight to the Hostel and passed out.
The next day, we woke up bright and early and hit up a nice bakery for breakfast. I did the economic thing and ordered a loaf of freshly baked bread (OMG it was amazing) for less than a Euro and completely filled up on that. Then we hit a coffee place and I got a shot of Espresso for 1 Euro. I was very proud of myself. After sufficently taking care of that whole “eat” thing that people, from time to time need to do, we hopped on the Metro to Sagrada Família, the totally badass cathedral that was designed by Antoni Gaudí, Art Nouvo god, and has been under construction since 1882. It will be open for worship (but not completed) they hope by 2010. Its massive and awesome and if you have no idea whats up with it, check it out. We hit a gift shop afterwards AND I BOUGHT A SPANISH FLAG =D.
Next, we went to another building Gaudí designed, which was also totally amazing. We toured it and the artist in me was very pleased. I have a bunch of pictures of it that I’ll figure out a way to put up here soon. But my brain is too dead to do that right now. Afterward, we were on our way to the beach when Claire realized that she lost her Camera, and we went back to the Gaudí house to look for it, but with no such luck. We were sad for her. At that point, we just wanted food, so we went to this really nice seafood place (no, I did not get seafood, are you out of your mind? I had pasta, obv). Sangrea is an amazing drink by the way, if you haven’t had it, then you’re missing out. We were going to go to the beach then, but several things were hindering this. a) We didn’t know where it was, b) it was dark, c) IT WAS EFFING RAINING. I forgot to mention that, didn’t I? Well now is as good a time as any.
It rained. The entire time. If it wasn’t raining, it was cold and damp. Lets review my reasons for going to Spain. Reason #’s 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5: TO ESCAPE THE RAIN, COLD, AND DAMPNESS OF LONDON. URGH.
Anyway, at that point, we were exhausted and headed back to the Supermercat and I got Zumo De Manzana, which was delicious, and went back to the Hostel for some sleep.
Woke up, decided to get more bread and coffee, did such things, and headed to the Metro toward the Bus station, grabbed the bus and headed for the Airport. Ryanair dicked us over to the point that we got complaint forms, but we managed to get to the flight on time and played cards until we boareded. Similarly to the first flight, this one made me feel like my head was in between two stones being slowly pushed together, and even now, as I’m sitting at my desk typing this, it is as if I have earplugs in.
Was the trip a success? I honestly could not tell you. I’m glad I got to Spain and have another country under my belt, and I’m glad to have experienced what I did, but the trip fell very short of the expectations I had for it. And now, I’m not going to be eating anything other than pasta, bread and cereal so that I can afford to go to Germany. If I don’t make it to Germany, I will return to the US an empty man.