May 06, 2009


Having declared that "it wouldn't be a beach day", that's exactly where we ended up!

With Juris in sole command of the guide book we set off through the rain walking past Port Vell and on to Barcelonata which is just as unattractive as the book proclaims. Not sure why we went there, but I don't question the choices of my partner.

Anyway, we soon found that our feet were treading sand and we'd reached the beach. Just as we sauntered sandward the sun also decided to push away the clouds and in a drying and brightening air the day looked up.

We ambled along taking in the many public sculptures and new architecture before we reached a new complex and Juris declared himself lost. I cranked up the TomTom and its satellites indicated we had reached Port Olimpic, and with that we were able to regain the guide book.

We headed for the Metro and disembarked at Placa de Catalunya to continue on foot.

Pausing to take in the public playing, philandering, provisioning, and probably pickpocketting. Our feet would be taking us up towards the Museum of Contemporary Art. On the way we grabbed a cheese baguette (probably called something else here) for E2.30 but it was enough for us both.

And then we happened on some back streets of Old Barcelona, and it was delightful to stroll scenically these side alleys, their frontages a chaos of shutters, balconies, laundry and other clutter (Look at Carrer de Lleo).

Glowing in purest white modern the simple smooth shape of MACBA contrasted colossally against the tall shadowed tenements of Old Barcelona. we Had reached the Museum of Modern Art.

Sometimes you just aren't lucky, and as luck would have it 2 of the 3 floors were closed for a change of exhibits, and the remaining exhibits would be closing at 15:00hrs. Perhaps 50minutes was enough of modern art anyway! Some of it was interesting, some of it looked like quick cheap daubs for a fast buck, but I can't remember any of it being particularly strange.

We headed onward to our next objective, and on the way enjoyed more Old Barcelona. On reaching the Catedral at Placa de la Seu we had entered the area known as Barri Gotic. This area of Barcelona still contains examples of Old Barcelona's Gothic heritage and it was quite a joy to explore the warren of tiny streets and places here.

There was street entertainment in many of the squares and there was no rush for us to be anywhere else.

With a painful foot I hobbled back to the harbour area for a quick re-visit to Rambla de Mar (the new bridge) where Juris and I managed to lose each other. But eventually we were re-united at Aparthotel Gutenberg where tea was cooked. Two kinds of fish, some tricolor pasta and a 'cheese sauce' made of natural yoghurt heated with sliced Edam cheese (don't try this at home folks) with the rest of yesterday's Strawberries.

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