Sunday, November 6, 2016

European Adventure - Part One!

Hello Adventure! I love it when I get to tag along on business trips!
Adventure awaits!
Unfortunately, it took us SO long to get to Barcelona from PDX.
PDX to Vancouver, BC (I hour)
Vancouver, BC to Toronto (5 hours)
Toronto to Barcelona (9+ hours)

I wore Coug gear almost the entire trip and only got ONE GO COUGS!
That was in the enormously long line to go through customs in Barcelona.
We arrived at our hotel in San Cugat around 10:30 a.m. Omid and Edgar had to go straight to work, and I took a train to discover Barcelona. We only had 1.5 days in the city, so I had to narrow my list down to a few small tourist sites. The first stop was the Arc de Triomphe and Parc de la Citudella.
Fun fact:....Barcelona also had an Arc de Triomphe.

The rain in Spain at the Arc de Triomphe
Did you know? Barcelona is the pick pocketing capitol of Europe?! Rick Steves and my friend Lyn (lived in Barcelona for several years) both say so. I purchased a FlipBelt for the trip and my moolah was safe!

After exploring La Rambla as well, I headed back to the hotel to try to do something with my rain drenched hair before meeting Omid and Edgar for dinner.
Would you believe my flat iron DIED on this trip too? It also happened in Singapore!
Despite the travel adaptor, my flat iron was so powerful, it blew the circuits in the room and I had to
get maintenance to reset the breaker for me. I also had to take a ride into town to the local Eroski store (think Target) and purchase a new flat iron. It's now Nas' for her upcoming European travels.
The good news: I had nicely ironed hair for the rest of the trip!
Hair situation fixed, and the guys and I headed back on the train to Barcelona for dinner. First stop, a local tapas bar for Catalonian wine and jamon sandwiches.

La Rambla tourist selfie!
Edgar, Omid and I all love wine. We all love good cheese. And we all love a good Iberian jamon. Next stop was the Jamon Experience.
Iberian jamon!!

All my favorites: tempranillo wine, manchego cheese and Iberian jamon!

This restaurant was delicious!! Thankful we had Edgar along to translate the menu and order our food for us!
Fun fact: Not everyone in Barcelona speaks English!!!

By this time, it was late at night and we were all suffering from jet lag. We headed back to the hotel.
The next morning, Omid and Edgar headed in to work and I headed back to Barcelona. There was still so much to see!!

First stop: La Sagrada Familia!!!
Not so fun fact: You MUST purchase tickets online in advance.
LSF only has a small number of tickets available at the door and they usually sell out before 9:00 a.m.
Guess who didn't purchase her ticket online? :(
I was so disappointed, but live and learn.  I spent about an hour at LSF just walking all around the building and looking at all the outside architecture. Did you know, LSF will still not be finished in my lifetime? Wow!

After that, I took the train to Monjuic to visit the National Cataluniya Museum. One of the very nice Priests at UP (Father Rutherford) had told me it was a must see. I am so glad he gave me this advice. It was amazing!
Palau Nacional

View of Barcelona from the top!

This is the dome inside.
It was absolutely spectacular!!

I saw SO many amazing things in this museum! Works of art from the year 1000!!!! Frescoes from ancient churches, art from Mariano Fortuny! I stood in front of his very famous Odalisque painting. I can remember this work from my Art History class at WSU. It was very cool to see in person. I also saw paintings by Pablo Picasso.
If you travel to Barcelona, this museum is a must see! It's only $12 Euros and the ticket is good for two days. If we had another day in town, I definitely would have visited again.

No comments: