I arrived after a ridic journey between 2 Glasgow airports. My journey went: taxi , bus, bus, taxi, train, plane, train, lost walking, taxi, hotel! It was quite the adventure. Although so many modes of transportation were used it wasn't all that expensive! Thanks to affordable public transportation in this part of the world. So I got to the hotel at about 2 and was excited to have the afternoon to explore. I stayed in the Poblenou neighborhood of the city which was adorable. I immediately walked down to the beach and it was just gorgeous and warm and fabulous. People were just laying out (some naked!), running along the beach, biking, eating ice cream and relaxing everywhere.
I was itching to get into the water but reluctant to leave any of my things unattended on the beach. So I headed back to the hotel and on my way I stopped at a grocery store. This is when it became very apparent that English was not very common in this area. I had quite a few funny interactions with people there and although I took heaps of Spanish I was generally so taken off guard at their long sentences coming at me I would just adopt a blank stare and try and smile.
Then I went back down to the beach and got in the water and promptly, for no reason, got extremely terrified of getting eaten by a shark. Like this has never happened to me before but it was just freaky. I was in a country, alone, with no one that knew my name or origin within literally the continent and it was dusk. Perfect plot for a shark attack. But I made it. I went to be early after watching Harry Potter in Spanish and grudgingly building my bike.
The next morning I got going fairly early, went for a nice swim in the ocean (a bit less shark-phobic) and then did my pre-race short run. I was going to walk my bike down to a close bike shop when I ran into 2 VERY ATTRACTIVE Spanish guys (from Valencia....next stop on my list now) who had a bike pump on the way to the expo so I let them pump my tires up and watched their muscles flex. I was blushing needless to say.
Then it was time to play tourist! So many cool buildings and the subway way so easy to navigate I just went where I pleased and even found a really good restaurant that had seitan, black beans and some really good corn soup and vegan cookies. I took lots of pictures and was so happy to be walking around in a dress and be warm!
Some of these pictures are from after the race when I walked around, pretty exhausted, and saw more sights.
|Pretty sweet Gaudi|
|There were all these Sycamore type trees there which are my fav and were so gorgeous. This was just coming out of the metro one day. Which by the way was super easy to travel on.|
|Came upon a little Sunday market and bought some local SUPER dark salted chocolate that was so good.|
|Even the streetlamps were art!|
|A large wire sculpture and I looked for an info board on it but couldn't find one. but I'm sure it is making a statement about something..|
|This is where the little party was|
|Pretty amazing building with like 5 different styles all jammed into one and all sorts of sculptures within the architecture.|
|Walk along the ocean and marina|
|So many gorgeous beaches!|
So yes it was a gorgeous place and everyone was very nice. I really liked it there and it was SO EASY to get around on the metro and I was able to just take the train to and from the airport which was very cheap and manageable even with a bike box!