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In Barcelona

Light bloggage because my wife and I are in Barcelona for a few days. (Hint: Frequent flyer miles have a lot to do with it.)

I haven’t been here since 1971, when Generalissimo Franco cast his cold chill on the place. The city is as beautiful as ever, and now so lively. Loved our first half day. Looking forward to another two.

Some random observations:

Who was the first person who looked at one of Gaudi’s plans and said, “Yup, I want to spend a lot of money to build one of those”? The blueprints must have had laughinstock written all over them. Very cool, though. What you at first think is sort of silly at seemingly random turnings reveal angles of great beauty. These buildings make you remember how utterly boring most modern architecture is.

We visited a recently unearthed synagogue in the old quarter. Tiny. It’s not an active place of worship, but my wife discretely prayed there. The historical marker on the outside has been covered with a gradffito that – weirdly – only revealed itself in the photo I took: Free Palestine.

Why do street singers/guitarists around the world confine themselves to the 1960s-1970s songbook? Is “Knock Knock Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door” really that good? On the other hand, we heard a street guitarist playing classical Spanish music so well that we bought her CD from her: Tita Avendaño.

We’ve seen almost no smokers. I’m beginning to think that Europe consists of two cultures at this point: Smoke-free surface-dwellers and smoking mole people. It’s the only explanation.

We’ve been eating well as veegetarians. We had a very good, simple tapas-like dinner last night in a local place, and right now we’re using the free Net at Ovni, an all you can eat buffet that is listed as vegetarian, although do very small pieces of ham count as vegetarian in Spain?

Anyway, having a great time. Wish you where here.

3 Responses to “In Barcelona”

  1. Enjoy your wonderful trip and yes I agree modern architecture is aesthetically boring. Unless of course you love staring at graph paper.

  2. Sounds truly lovely, enjoy!

  3. Check out the restored apartment in Gaudi’s La Pedrera, worthy of a House of the Future exhibit in some 1910 World’s Fair, and the Gaudi museum in the attic there. After years of my being doubtful about their photographs, seeing the actual buildings made it clear that the man was a genius.

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