#11 Barcelona, the capital city of Catalonia: Part I

Barcelona is a huge architecturally outstanding and marvelously dazzling city.  It is richly complicated and there is so much to report. I have to be honest; I have hidden from writing this Blog of Barcelona because of the city’s richness and my fear of not reporting to you its real exquisiteness and splendor.

The fact that there are so many tourists was not a surprise because they have a magnificent harbor that alone brings in millions of people per year on ships that dock, two and three times a day. Cruisers begin in Barcelona, or end here or have a stop on their cruise itineraries. If the tourist industry in this lovely city should slow down, I do believe the city would crack and dry up.  Surely the entrepreneurs would not be able to swindle as much. Locals would tear them from limb to limb.  I say this because nearly every dining bill had to be corrected, as much as 5 Euros each time. I bought four pairs of earrings and received only three in the bag. I blame myself for not checking. I do not wish to sound too critical here so I will say that this could all have been an individual coincidence.

Barcelona is a city with many monuments and many tourist sights. They are proud to show you the buildings for the 1992 Summer Olympics.

Barcelona is a city of dense apartment buildings. Everywhere they can build an apartment building they are and they did. Many have balconies with cascading plants creating lovely street views.

This is the city of the kiss. Not just a little peck, or the obligatory kiss on one cheek and then the other, I mean the mad passionate embrace kind of kiss.  You see many couples on the streets, in stores, having a drink or a bite to eat and then as if by magic, they land in an impromptu embrace.

Barcelona is the city of bags. Everyone who is walking whether in the tourist sections or the local sections is carrying a bag, or bags. Some bags contain elegant items bought in the Placas; I can tell by the names imprinted on the front, sides and back of the bags, some contain necessities or curios of one nature or another, and many, many bags are full of groceries. This is bag city.

This is the city of Tapas. I finally put the Tapa thing together. We walked all day today and went in and out of many Tapas bars.  To me, Tapas are little delicacies that are more colorful and more beautiful than pastries lining the bar; people take their little plates and pick and choose, as they like.  I tried to pick several things, but each Tapa had a number of things piled upon it I found not appetizing to me. Sorry folks, I love food, so I am sure I will come round, but I will need a Tapas Tutor when I come back.

Barcelona is a city of Taxi’s. Our hotel was located so far out from wherever you want to go; it is nearly in another country. Due to our distant hotel locations from this tour company, we will not use them again. One day after returning home we canceled our trip to Croatia with them.  We will have to find another way to see that part of the world.  Now back to Taxi drivers becoming your momentary best friend.  Some of your momentary best friends drive around a bit, to up the price I noticed and each one comes and goes a different way to the hotel. Round about rides jack up prices. We could have had a very nice city center hotel for the Euros we spent on taxis each day.  Now let us just leave it at that

Barcelona is a city of art.  You have the beautiful architecture of Antoni Gaudi, which I will share in Part 2. Let us remember that Pablo Picasso lived in Barcelona for many years and the Picasso Museum is a wonder, full of paintings, drawings and sculptures housed in five buildings. It takes all day to see just some of it.  Let us remember Joan Miro who was born in Catalonia and has many paintings and sculptures in Barcelona. I re-learned that he is a surrealist painter and realized I like surrealism, always have.  There is Dali to explore as well and many, many more artists who have added their gifts and capabilities to Barcelona’s abundance.  My goodness, I think perhaps art vitamins must have been in the water supply of Barcelona in the late 1800’s and 1900’s. Maybe those art vitamins are still there, but for the tourist their water also carries possibilities of intestinal infections, which can be quite daunting. Stick to the bottled water all the way.

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