Monday, October 16, 2006

Barcelona...lots of fun, but bring a good map

Also comfortable shoes. And lots of cash. So after my last post I went to Tesco to get food and Marks and Spencer for the good lemonade and then went to the bus station. I read until the bus was ready to go and then I got on the bus and didn't read so as to avoid throwing up. Instead I ate lots of bread products and lemonade. Then we (me and Rachel and Courtney) got to the airport, waited half an hour for the check in to open, waited in line for 15 minutes to check in, and then waited another 2 hours for the plane. It was one of those little planes, and they didn't have the bridge across from inside the airport, instead everybody walked out onto the tarmac and up stairs into the plane. Then I had a lovely 5 minutes trying to shove my backpack under the seat in front of me. Finally I gave in and put it in the overhead bin. I finished my book about 15 minutes before we got into Barcelona and spent the time watching the small child in the seat in front of me who was standing in his mother's lap and giggling at the people behind him. Then we landed and went through customs. I always wish I was from and EU country at that point, since they always just wave them through everything. I mean it was this tiny airport and security was pretty non existent, but we still had to fill out this form since we are American and not EU. Anyways we did that and then went to track down a bus to Barcelona. It took about an hour to get to Barcelona. When we got there it was around midnight and the metro was closed. Also there were no taxis at the bus station, and only Courtney speaks very much Spanish (which isn't even what they speak in Barcelona mainly, but it'll get you by) Anyways, we called Erin to get directions, and ended up at this hotel. Erin had left a key for me at the desk, so I went up and was like key for room 315? unfortunately the concierge didn't speak English, and I do not speak catalan. But I managed to make it clear that I wanted the key to room 315 and I guess he just wanted to get rid of me, so he gave it to me, since he gave me one. We went up, and I opened the door, turned on the lights... and the two people whose room it actually was started yelling at me in Italian. I got out of there very quickly (So quickly that I still have the key card) Anyways I called Erin again and she came and got us, which was good since some of us were freaking out (not naming names, but it wasn't me). Anyways Erin and Mark who lives in Barcelona came and got us and took Courtney and Rachel to their hostel and then we stopped at this Irish pub in Barcelona which was rather different than Irish pubs in Ireland. And I got some food, and water which was nice since planes really dehydrate you. Then me and Erin went to the hotel, where I realized that I totally want to travel on a business expense account from now on, but as I am a student I don't see that happening for a while. Then since it was around 3 in the morning we went to bed. The next day I went out to look at monuments and stuff with COurtney and Rachel. We went to the Barcelona Cathedral and Santa Anna, which was closed for siesta. Then we went to find lunch, and ended up going to this place called Nostrums, which was cool. They had prepackaged things (I got tortellini, they had a bunch of different stuff though). Then we went back to the hotel to wait for Erin since she was going to be done with work soon. When she got there we went out to shop. There is a whole taxi story, which yo can get from Erin. Shopping was cool, we found this whole long street that was just shops. I bought some sunglasses, which I needed, since I had broken mine my first day in Cork, and some scarves. After a while we decided to head back to get dressed for dinner, which was rahter more complicated than it sounds. We ended up taking 2 cabs, one for me and Erin and Joyce (who works with Erin), and another for Courtney and Rachel. We got back finally and got all changed to go out. Courtney and Rachel were going to meet us after dinner, but they didn't so no more talking about them for quite some time. We went to dinner at this fusion restraunt down on the beach. It was all really good, except for some reason with my dessert there was some sort of coffee flavored jello. Jello should not be coffee flavored, in case anyone else ever runs across it just skip it. Then we went to this club called shoko, which was fun. The DJ played technoey music which is better than the continuous 80's/Boy band and Britney Spears stuff that is the rage in Cork. Also they did mixed drinks. Yay daquiris (Don't worry mom I only had one, but seriously all they have in Cork is beer, which I don't like, so given the opportunity for a daquiri I said yes) We stayed till they closed and then went out to the beach which was cool, it's still really warm in Barcelona, unlike Cork where it is starting to get chilly (not freezing, you just have to wear a coat and sometimes hats and gloves would be nice) The water was around tap temprature, although I did not feel the need to get more than my feet wet, unlike some other people who we didn't know. Anyway, we went back to the hotel and got some sleep in preparation for a hard day of shopping on Saturday. We started around 11 something, although we got food first (and I got a box of 6 Dunkin Donuts not quite Krispy Kreme, but they keep better, and donuts in Cork tend towards the cakey) We then went to the market, which was fun except the sections with meat (most of it). And since I'm sure you don't want a blow by blow account of shopping, fast forward till siesta when we had goldfish bowl size sangrias (didn't drink them all, don't worry) and then looked at art. After that we decided to go look at this cathedral, which we eventually got to after some more stops for shopping, a wedding, and a snack. (I got some cute shoes to around this point) We went back to look at the art, took a cab back to the hotel and decided that we wanted food and sleep in that order. So me and Erin went to this pasta restraunt, which was really good. They had really good salad too. After that we went back to the hotel and packed since I had to be at the bus station at 8 in the morning (refraining from making snide comments about travelling companions at this point). I watched Shall We Dance (the new one) with Spanish dubs, and then went to sleep. We got up (somewhat reluctantly) the next morning, I caught a cab to the bus station, got on the bus and went back to the airport (Spain looks really cool early in the morning it was still sort of sunrise since it's really hilly in some points, so the sun has to get over that too. Got to the airport, and reversed the first bit. except I didn't try to shove my stuff under the seat this time. I got back to Cork, went home and collapsed onto my bed for about an hour. Then my friend Nicole called and since I said I didn't want to walk and Cork is a bit dead on Sundays, she suggested a movie. We were going to go to one of the Cork Film Festival movies, but they were all sold out, so we went to see Little Miss Sunshine, which was reeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaaaally good. It was soooo funny. Everyone needs to go see it and then call me and talk about it. After that we went to this Italian restraunt and had pizza, which was good, and then we went to the spar for dessert. After that it started getting drizzly so we went home, and I watched a movie until I started falling asleep and then I just went to bed. Today I just kind of hung out and watched my birthday presnet from mom and dad the Pride and Prejudice with Colin Firth :) I think I pulled a muscle/tendon in my foot, so I was trying to rest it so it will stop hurting. Then I came over to school to do this, and check e-mail and stuff.
Here are pictures. My camera is officially messed up, so while it will do the occasional picture, there will not be as many as there were.