Barcelona Bound

Since we didn’t rent a car, all of our trips started at the train station. This next leg began no different – well…………kind of. Before the picture below was taken, we had a situation.

The taxi dropped us off, we grabbed some coffee and croissants and then this happened. A gentleman said something to us in French, we obviously didn’t understand and then he said ‘get out’. Huh? Looking around, others were getting their bags, throwing away their purchases and heading outside of the station.

We saw what we determined was the ‘incident commander’ and ultimately this turned out as an abandoned bag, eventually claimed, possibly by a homeless woman and we were let back into the building. Geez that was exciting – not.

Eric got us first class tickets again and we’re not riding ‘backwards’, yeah!!!! However, instead of being the first car, we were the absolute last car. I mean, the v.e.r.y. last car.

Yep, still in France as we continue to see vineyards along the route.

One more train before arriving at Barcelona.

Even though we’re on one of the ‘fast trains’ I was still able to get a few photos.

While not visiting the Pyrenees Mountains, I was able to get a quick shot. They straddle the border of France and Spain, extending 300+miles. They are older than the Alps.

A short taxi ride and we were at our last AirBNB for this trip, located in the Gracia region of Barcelona. Dare I say BEST AirBNB ever? We only met the owner a few minutes to handover the keys and do a quick walk. We didn’t have any full-blown meals at the kitchen table but there was plenty of room. Loved the bench seat along the wall.

This was our first place on the ground floor. While Eric was aware (yet vocal) about the steps in our first place (remember 86 steps – one way) it was getting wearying by the end of our stay. Even I will admit that. 😦

This place had three bedrooms.

Adrienne’s choice

Next room was our choice. The headboard was formerly a door, secured to the wall.

The third but un-used bedroom is seen below. The bedrooms were pretty much in line with each other. This place was skinny but had depth as you will soon see. In the photo below a fan is seen in the corner. Each of the bedrooms had one. If put on high……….felt and sounded like a tornado! Thanks, hon for waking me up. At night. After I was settled in.

Small but efficient living area with a TV (unseen). The couch was pretty darn comfortable and big enough for two of us to share easily.

Towards the back of the apartment was the kitchen. Again, small, tidy, stove top & oven along with a small dishwasher. What looks like mats on the floor are tiles incorporated in the concrete flooring.

Turn around 180 degrees and you see a small fridge on the counter but another unseen fridge directly below it behind the curtain. The rest of the space behind the curtain………washer/dryer combo unit. Just like my time in Shanghai. Don’t ask Eric how many times he washed the first load, over and over and over. Adrienne helped him figure out the buttons (her ulterior motive – she had clothes to wash).

The powder room was also tight and the only time we shared one space during our trip. Compact corner shower was a continual fight with the shower curtain! No matter how much you tried, water escaped confinement.

One of my favorite spots was at the v.e.r.y back part of the apartment. It was partially covered with plexi for rain protection, with the remainder open and uncovered letting all the sunshine in.

Every time I sat out there I found more ‘things’ hidden amongst the foliage. There was a lot of stuff placed in the outdoor living area.

When I said this may be the best AirBNB ever, the owner truly thought of everything. She left us a new box of Nespresso cups for coffee, sugar cubes, snack cookies and a sugar-free option. Recommendations for restaurants, directions for nearby shops and extra powder room supplies were found. This doesn’t seem like much, but I absolutely could not think of a thing in the place that ‘wished we had’. Now, as you can see in the photos above, this place was quirky, which added additional charm.

We had to walk sooooooo far for lunch. Not. 100 yards (maybe) and we had arrived. Tapeo. Remember that name if you ever go to Barcelona. Spanish tapas were prevalent in the area we visited. Perfect for me. Get to try lots of things and not waste food.

Tapas, defined as appetizer or snack in Spanish cuisine.

What do (should) you start every meal in Barcelona with?

We stayed with the red wine sangria. First ordering a 1/2 liter. Ordered another 1/2 liter and possibly one additional glass. What can I say, it was that good.

What else did we order? We were introduced to tomato bread. Simple yet oh so satisfying. Crusty bread, grated tomato with a splash of olive oil and sprinkle of sea salt. OMG.

Pan-fried sardines and lemon.

At my request, asparagus tempura with romesco sauce.

Vegetable stuffed squid. Yep I tried it. They enjoyed the remainder.

Now, I did like these…………..if I could only figure out what they were! We poured over this photo more minutes that ‘Id like to admit. And we still don’t remember.

Nope, nada, no way and never going to happen. Stewed tripe with chorizo, ham, smoked eel and chick peas.

That’s it. We’re in Barcelona.

Loved the tapas way of eating and the accompanying sangria!

Ginny