What We Did in Barna: For Mom.

Dear Momason,

You wanted to write down all we did on our trip, so I decided to get started for you.

I picked you guys up at the airport after waiting an hour and thinking you got lost riding around the baggage machine because of it’s thrilling high speeds. We took the bus into the city and zipped up to “Joan of Arc.” The newly arrived got their showers (and turned on the heat) and then we took the metro back down into the city (the “Jamie” stop, Jaume I.) Our first meal on the ground was a favorite of Tim and me: arepas with chicken and abogados…eerrr, avocados. After a loop admiring what I twere Roman ruins (at the Centre Cultural del Born), but turned out to be something a little more recent, we went into Guzzo. You got overwhelmed by all of the kissy greetings, but Tim held his own as we met M. and S., and then more old acquaintances of mine. We watched M’s jam session and learned that the singer definitely does not feel guilty anymore. We decided to walk back “just a few blocks” (a.k.a probs more like 40 minutes) and before mutiny on the Bounty (or blisters-from-the-boots), I directed us into Café Adonis, where T. began his classic trip philosophizing and you enjoyed your first slices of tortilla española.
We made it back to the apartment and plopped on the couch, or as T. says “Everybody to their phones!”
We had good intentions on Sunday to explore Gràcia’s cute shopping street, but e’erthang was closed (natch.) We found a HUGE breakfast at La Nena (my favorite was the magdalena covered in chocolate sauce) and then kept wandering until we reached Fontana. If I would have read the metro signs, I would have known the Montjuïc metro was closed, but I didn’t figure that out until Paral.lel. We took a quick horizontal stroll through Las Ramblas and walked along the port, where T. admired the boat-shaped gazebo-y things (What are they called?) I insisted the beach was “just around the corner” (a 20-minute corner…) and we made it to the Mediterranean and muscle beach. We took a seat and T. continued his existential contemplations while trying to take some hunk-a-man photos. Next stop was the metro, which delivered us directly back to Joan of Arc. I think we skipped lunch this day and headed straight to “Amy” at my 3€ cinema. Dinner was very “Gut”-or at least the chocolate brownie dessert (you weren’t too interested in the seitan mil-feuilles).
Monday we had a breakfast of ham + cheez sandwiches in Plaça Virreina and walked through Gràcia again. This time we were more successful. We stopped at my yogi shop, where I found a christmas present for Le Squish that I would later loose (like my beloved teal scarf!). Next door, you and I entertained ourselves admiring some blockprint fabrics and we both found the perfect fabric for a new bedspread. Yours is blue-ish and mine is gray and D. says “it’s nice.” We decided to walk and not metro to pilates and we arrived in the nickel of time. Not to be shown up by the two models in the class, we did our best spinal roll-ups and T. decided he should keep getting his body moving after this little inspiration. You decided you liked some of her new cues. We stopped for lunch at the 9€ menú place behind the Institut Ramon Llull and got salads and chicken pounded paper thin. T. and I tried to trick you and say that we’d eaten all the chocolate cake, but you knew we hadn’t. We stopped into the Institut so you could check out the tile and the spirally staircase and then we went back to the apartment. Dinner was pizza on Verdi.
Tuesday morning we decided to head for breakfast at the neighborhood pastry shop. We walked a few blocks before deciding to catch a cab to Aragó and Pau Claris, where we’d catch a train for Girona. Most members of the party took a cat nap on this train, but the views for those who stayed awake were quite nice. Upon arrival, we found our way to the old hospital (where the princess found her crown) and then we made it to the city center. We checked out the bridges (e.g. the one designed by Eiffel) and the cathedral. After freezing our arses on a loop through the cloister, we found our most average meal of the trip. Sowwy. Energy after lunch was low, but I dragged us to the city walls and you faked phone calls as you walked around in the late afternoon light, with the Pyrenees in the background. We did finally find the wall, and someone to take our only non-selfie group shot of the trip. The ride home is better forgotten. We had paninis for dinner at Chatelet and T. directed lost restaurant-goers to the door around the corner.
This morning everyone slept in. We decided to do breakfast at home, which for T. meant leftover -za and for us, meant muffins + take-away coffee. We walked down to the giant drip castle and you and T. were both alternatively under- and overwhelmed by Gaudí’s modernism. I liked the colors! We metro’d back to Jamie and made it for round 2 of arepas and then walked through El Born where T. did a little Christmas shopping, you looked at boots, and I accompanied. We walked into the cathedral through the back door…the cloister (this one isn’t as cold as Girona’s, but, like, 20 ducks stinkier.) We had plans to grab a cake at Caelum, but it was a little too claustrophobic, so we got ice cream and tickets to the Bultaco museum instead. We were pretty pooped and lounged around the house for a bit, but to avoid going ca-ray-zay, you inspired us to get out of the house. For dinner, we walked up the street to Soco, where it seemed like they were trying to close from about 30 minutes after we got there. But the wine was good and the burgers, good enough.
We did a second breakfast at home, except for this time, I didn’t spill the OJ in the entryway. You showed me what Houzz was. We passed through the market in Gràcia for T. to find some saffron and on the way around the block, we found a cute reversible snap skirt for me and a caga-tió for T2. Walking towards Passeig de Gràcia, we decided to hop on the metro down to Plaça Catalunya and duck in Corte Inglés for a peculiar bathroom stop (at least in the men’s stalls we hear…). Since breakfast was lighter, lunch was earlier, so we passed through Sant Pere until we found the right stop-an Italian place called Via Augusta with a very nice Brazilian hipster waiter. As the sun went down, the wind picked up and we began to question our plan to sit outside…bad hot coffee sort of helped. We had to waste some time before the big haircuts at Basic, so we walked by Santa Caterina market and through the courtyard around the National Library (all just “a few blocks away”…or not…) We popped into a bookstore and a boot store and then, finally went to the salon and sat down. T. was first. The hair expert made no bones about what needed to be done with T’s back-buzz: let that grow! He then cut his hair and T. emerged with more curls than a poodle. You were next, and though M. cut off a lot of hair, he made the style oh-so-sheek (that’s a combination of your name and chic.) We celebrated our last night in Catalunya and our American Thanksgiving with tacos and enchiladas at a yummy Mexican restaurant.
Friday: Like zomboids, we made it through the metro at 6:40 am, I dropped you off at the bus stop…and from their I assume check-in at the airport was easy, because you made it home without a hitch!

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