Thursday, August 11, 2011


originally posted May 17/11


Ahhh the things I think of when I'm not actually writing the
journals...I always forget to mention these....

While I have somewhat attempted to learn Spanish before I came here
and learn each day, Jos chooses to talk in English like they
understand. LOL. I tease her about it all the time. She says she does
it on purpose to "assess their English". Its quite hilarious actually!
One thing I find funny is that she'll try to communicate using English
and hand gestures. After waiting a bit, I will go and use the same
English and they understand hahahaha...if that doesn't work, I use my
broken Spanish. Some of what I learned:

Plantas = floors/levels (as in buildings)...has nothing to do with plants
Tacquilla = ticket office
Lavabos = washroom
Entrada = entrance
Salida = exit
acensor = elevator
escalera = escalator

-Casa Batlló-

I would have to say that out of the Gaudi apartments, this would be my
favourite. And to think, I told Jos I might skip it!! It was fatigue
talking...I must have been out of my mind! Again, pls take a look at
the online photos...Gaudi is hard to describe. He is just so
brilliant. The theme of this apartment was water. Why are all the
brilliant, innovative guys unavailable? LOL. The terrace was amazing!
I just can't say enough about Gaudi...but at the same time, I can't
put it into words....

As we walked to La Rambla, we started to get hungry. We ate Piscolabis
restaurant's patio (which was on an island in the middle of the
street, while the actual restaurant was on the sidewalk/street). They
specialized in tapas and had some funky things on the menu including a
Hello Kitty rigatoni pasta and a Winnie-the-Pooh something or other.

The interior of the restaurant was quite nice. Very impressive, in
fact. Though I did see a hobo exit the men's washroom and he didn't
look like a customer...I really shouldn't make judgements.

We ordered:
- beer
- deep fried brie covered in black sesame seeds
- small fried fish
- mini hamburger with foie gras
- seafood pasta


Jos wanted to La Rumble with the guys making the squeaking, annoying
ducky noises...who were quite creepy as they followed people and
quacked at them. We really made sure to watch our purses, as this
tourist area is notorious for pickpockets. There were guys gambling
and likely ripping people off by asking their friends to help with the
trick. Because it was a Sunday, most of the shops were closed, so we
did a heck of a lot of walking here. We would come back tomorrow to do
some shopping. We did buy some jewelry from the Chachka tents
hehehehe. We walked until the end of La Rambla and crossed over to
Port Vell.


We reached Port Vell's bridge and I was actually pretty nervous. There
were too many people on there!! I thought it was going to collapse!
Jos and I walked through it and took another route, only to end up at
the cement abruptly disappearing. We had to backtrack to get on the
scary bridge. ACK! We were both trying to scramble across. We
thankfully made it alright and discovered that the mall was open. Jos
was going to attempt to break the non-shopping streak. Other than
jewelry and museum gift shop shopping, she hasn't bought much.

We went into almost all the stores and Jos' money stayed in her
pocket. I got thirsty and went for a pina colada while Jos had a San
Miguel. We left empty handed. Jos walked toward the imax theatre and
beyond towards the Gothic City. I was tired so I told her I would head
back to the B&B and meet her there. We waited for a bit, soaking the
rays and thinking about what to do. As she probably suspected, I was
just tired and once I got over it, I stayed with her and we explored.


Is it nerdy that every time I see the words Gothic City, I think of
Gotham City? Anyway Jos and I ended up wandering around the area. This
is where the Picasso Museum was as well. We slipped in and out of the
smaller streets, surprised to see that some of the shops were open.
Jos came across a man singing opera, but I was more focused on the man
sitting outside of the church which actually turned out to be a
statue. He looked I was bit taken aback.


As we explored, we came across an art installation. It was quite
amusing. The idea was to have people write their "sins"/"secrets" on
pieces of fabric and then hang/pin/staple them to the the strings and
pole. On Wednesday, the plan was to "cleanse" the sins away. I
couldn't understand a lot of the Spanish ones, but the English ones
were very entertaining, for example...I LISTEN TO ABBA...hahaha. I
took photos of some of them, so I hope you enjoy reading them as much
as I did. Jos and I added to the installation as well.


Dad told us we could trace our roots back to Valencia where our family
(on his side) is from. We didn't get to meet any of them, but we did
find part of our family. I'll have to write a caption for the picture
when it is uploaded. You'll see what I mean when you see the photos.


Oh churros...why are you so good? I purchased some at a store along
with some chocolate. We ate churros as we walked towards the Catedral.
We also witnessed a giant protest against the government. Bringing up
the end of the parade were the drummers. There were a few women in
there which I was happy to see. The egg remnants on the bank machine
door reminded me of the G20. Still, it is good to see that people are
voicing their opinions and concerns.

As eating good food is never far from our minds, Jos and I discussed
where we should eat and ended up at Balbao Berria.


If you don't know what pintxos are, you better learn before going to
Barcelona! Pintxos, are baguette-like pieces of bread topped with
various delicious combinations of food. We went to a place called
Bilbao Berria which specializes in pintxos and tapas, situated right
by the Catedral. At this place, each piece of food has a skewer stick
in it. After you finish each one you put the stick in the metal
container and at the end, the waiter counts all the sticks and you pay
by stick. Each one costs 1,65.

what i ate
1. chicken, zucchini and tomato on a stick
2. asparagus wrapped in iberian ham
3. bread topped with roasted red pepper stuffed with cod
4. bread topped with egg salad, cheese and red & black caviar
5. bread topped with green peppers, tuna, brie, caramelized onion and
red peppers
6. two fried chicken wings on a stick
7. strawberry and pineapple wrapped in iberian ham
8. bread topped with lettuce, crab salad, white asparagus and caviar
9. bread topped with mash potatoes and a prawn
10. panacotta
11.rice pudding with waffle

what jos ate
1. chorizo on a stick
2. bread topped with lettuce, crab salad, white asparagus and caviar
3. teriyaki chicken on a stick with sauce
4. asparagus wrapped in iberian ham
5. grilled sacallops and shrimp on a stick
6. bread topped with raw salmon with shaved egg
7. bread topped with mash potatoes and a prawn
8. rice pudding with waffle

and yes, if you are wondering, we probably did and still are gaining
weight. [dear co-workers, pls do not mistake me for a new's me...Sam...I just ate too much on vacation!]

Buenos noches~

Sam & Jos

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