Thursday, December 12, 2013

Tuesday, November 12, 2013 – Barcelona, Spain – Sunny – 72F

A beautiful day in Barcelona…

Another “Fever Dream” night – standard for jet lagged people like me.  We had breakfast in the “Principal Room” – cereal, scrambled eggs, pastries, cheeses, breads, automated fancy coffee maker.  It was OK.

Our plan today involved walking to the beach that we had seen on a recent “House Hunter’s International”.  We went down La Rambla to the Colom Monument and then to the left, passing the Marina and the Mall.

 20131112_Colom Monument (Small) 

20131112_Me, Colom and Diego (Small)

Cristofor Colom Monument

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Beachside Walkway

20131112_Lobster Statue (Small)

Need a big pot for this guy

Even though it was not overly warm, there were a few people taking advantage of the fine sand and sun.  We also saw a squad of Asian Mobile Massage girls working on clients on their own blankets.  The girls all had the same look – sweatshirts and baseball caps.  Probably lucrative – we saw at least three of them in our little spot on the beach.

20131112_Barcelona Beach (Small) 20131112_Beach (Small)

Barcelona Beach

The cool weather certainly didn’t stop the wet-suited surfers, who took advantage of good surf to ride their boards.

20131112_Surfers Barcelona (Small)

Surf’s Up

After walking about a mile along the beach, we turned and walked perpendicular to the beach looking for the main shopping street near the Plaza Catalunya.  On the way, I had to take a picture of a building with a cantilevered section (the Gas Company).

20131112_BCN Gas Company (Small)

Barcelona Natural Gas Company HQ

We eventually found the main street and turned back to La Rambla where I was able to get a picture of the full length of the pedestrian walkway.

20131112_Start of La Rambla (Small)

The top of La Rambla

All through the walk, Ellen had been checking out beauty shops and salons looking for a place to get her hair cut.  Prices ran in the high to mid 30 Euros for a cut only.  While walking through a very fancy part of the La Rambla area, she found a salon that offered a shampoo, haircut, and blow-dry for 39 Euros.  Sold…

I used their WiFi while Ellen got some Spanish pampering.  I think the overall result was perfect. My Facebookers agreed – 10 “Likes”.

20131112_pampered in BCN (Small) 20131112_The BCN cut (Small) 20131112_the finished masterpiece (Small)

Pampered in Barcelona

Continuing our walk, we took Hospital Street past the hotel.  The area quickly turned into a middle eastern-Arab ethnic area – a kind of “Little Istanbul”.  On the street, we also found what appeared to a campus of sorts occupying what was a hospital dating back to the early 15th century (perhaps the basis for the name of the street).  A good deal of the architecture had been preserved and restored.

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The Hospital Campus

Although La Rambla has restaurants every 10 feet or so, we still had trouble deciding what to eat.  We decided to try the “Combination Dinners” advertised at just about every restaurant on the street - “Tapas plus Paella or Pizza”.  The difference between the options was price and how many tapas selections you got.  The further down La Rambla you went, the more tapas you got and the lower the price.  We thought we found the low point with “2 tapas and 8.95 Euros”. 

We sat at nice tables (heaters were turned on to deal with the chilly evening) and ordered: Two Tapas each (mushrooms, spicy potatoes, Artichoke Hearts,and Greek Salad).  We also ordered one pizza margherita and one vegetable paella.  We also ordered a half liter of Sangria.  Bottom line:  Everything was very good and we couldn’t finish all the food (we did finish the Sangria).

20131112_tapas on La Rambla (Small)

Tapas for Dinner – La Rambla

20131112_sipping sangria (Small)

Sangria for Two

Of course, as soon as we left we noticed another restaurant further down La Rambla offering three tapas per person for the same 8.95 Euros.  Next time.

A little more strolling down La Rambla looking for a Mickey D’s for a Catalonian Cono.  They are one Euro and come in a mini waffle cone.  Not as much ice cream as you get back home but it still tastes the same.

The desk said we could call for our cab to the pier in the morning.

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