Day 12 - Spain Trip - Barcelona

Day 12
July 2, Tuesday
Barcelona

After 27 years I returned to Barcelona. The first time I visited I was there a month on my own living with a host family and going to school to learn Spanish. Today I was there as a mom on a bus trip with a group of teenagers. I can’t tell you how many times I kicked myself today for not reading my old journal before coming! I looked through my album and that brought back old memories but there are many memories that have shriveled with the years.

I do remember trudging up a hill to the Guell park which was our first stop this morning. I remember going up a hill and walking through the gardens and seeing the view of the city. We were the only people around and we wandered wherever we wanted to and hung out surrounded by the works of Antonio Guadi. Today we took a bus up the hill. We met a tour guide and joined a long line of tourists to pay to get into the park. We were led through the gardens and tried (most of the time in vain) to take pictures without strangers in them. The structures were the same as when I was there, but the popularity and crowds were something new! We tried to recreate an old picture I had of myself as a 17 year old in the park and snapped a lot of Jackson and Ryan. The architecture is amazing as well as the tile work.

We drove around the city a little and went to Monjuic to see another view of the city. This time it was of the harbor as well. It was a hot day so sitting in the shade and enjoying a drink was perfect! I remember being in that area, but I think I took a cable car there and there was a restaurant up where we went.

Our next stop was a new one for me. We went through the Barcelona club soccer museum. We were able to see the fields, locker rooms, and many trophies including the World Cup.

I loved that we all went on the metro to our next destination. We were actually on the line that I had to ride to get to Les Corts where my home was located! Las Ramblas looked completely different and I was so disappointed! It was my favorite place to go while staying in Spain. Today cars are allowed to drive on both sides of a pedestrian area and the shops and buildings have changed as well. No more restaurant after restaurant with seating and umbrellas outside. We did happen on the market that I remember vividly. That has changed too. No more raw meat hanging from ropes and hooks. They are now behind glass and refrigerated.

Back on the metro we traveled a path I am confident that I also traveled. We arrived at La Sagrada Família. This structure is just a pure marvel! It is still in the process of being completed. The goal is to have it done by 2026. So much has been added to it. It is awe inspiring. How someone can come up with such a project is amazing!

Our last ride on the metro took us to another confusing dinner. They brought out small plates to share with only a few things on the plate. We weren’t sure whether to stock up or hold back in case more was to come! After 5 different tapas they served dessert and the kids looked around for the main entry. Good thing the bus driver took us to a supermercado so the kids could grab some more to eat before bed!

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