Med Cruise 2017, Day 11, Barcelona, Spain

We went down to breakfast and once again had a wonderful breakfast. I had pancakes with fresh berries and Babs had a omelet. Complete with a fantastic buffet, this hotel’s breakfast is hard to beat!

Today in Barcelona is a new day both literally and figuratively. There have been sporadic demonstrations across the city since we have been here. Today the legislature  in Barcelona voted to separate their Catalonia government from Spain. Later in the day, this resulted in large demonstrations which caused the closing of the Hop on bus stops near and around the old part of the city where parliament is located.

Tonight it reminded me of our Star Spangled Banner with bombs (fire works) bursting in air all through the night. The people dancing in the streets and the patio below our room, normally empty, filled with people drinking and celebrating. Add military and police helicopters hovering overhead both during the day and night. Historic and exciting times for the people of Catalonia! Thankfully none of this really affected our sight-seeing.

We boarded our Hop on bus with our first planned stop the Placa de Catalunya where we began about a twelve block stroll down the famous, pedestrian only, La Rambala. You may recall that this is where a terrorist struck down many people with a truck just a short time ago.

La Rambala is packed with people at all hours of the day and night. There are free-standing kiosks selling souvenirs, plants, flowers, and seeds, and all varieties of leather goods. Cafe style restaurants are also all along the boulevard. A major attraction of La Rambala is the market which offers all sorts of spices, candy, fish, meats and pastry sold in individual stands and tapas bars.

We walked through the entire market, purchasing a few things to take home. I really wanted to buy some Iberian ham which the vendor said was packaged to go through US customs,but I wasn’t convinced my purchase wouldn’t ultimately be lunch for airport dogs!

I needed to sit down so we went to Duncan Donuts and I had a coffee and donut.

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This street performer posed for photos if given a tip.

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We boarded our Hop on bus and headed to our next stop, the Poble Espanyol. Poble Espanyol was developed for the International Exhibition held in Barcelona in 1929. Poble Espanyol translates to “Spanish village”. It has many shops, restaurants, and examples of Spanish architectural style.

Babs continued to the part of the exhibit that offered a panoramic view of the city, a chapel, and a children’s play ground decorated for Halloween.

Of course, this involved a lot of steps down hill, so I sat it out next to a water trough and the blue arched entrance to the Picasso museum.

We had lunch at an outdoor restaurant, Poble Espanyol Tapas Barcelona. We sat outside because we were the only ones there. Normally, the outside seating is loaded with smokers who seem to generate enough smoke to choke an elephant. Today however, we enjoyed an excellent lunch. The deep-fried mashed potatoes with garlic mayonnaise and Barcelona calamari were the best!

After lunch, we continued exploring the Poble. We took a look into the art pavilion, checked out other restaurants, and the area where they were rehearsing for a concert  tonight.

On our way out of the exhibition, Babs posed with some of the giant mannequins depicting the four seasons.

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She couldn’t bypass this boy “pooping” without taking a picture.

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Our last stop of the day is Placa d’Espanya. From this square one can get a good view of the central monumental fountain designed by Josep Maria Jujol.

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On the Montjuic hill is where the trade pavilions for the 1929 were located  This morning it was crystal clear but now hazy smog has obstructed the view.

DSC01687Here you also see the two Venetian towers and the Barcelona bull ring which has been converted to a shopping mall.

We returned to our hotel where we decided to finally see what the roof top pool looked like. Nice!

Because of all the celebration and uncertainty of the result of the declaration of independence from Spain would have on things, we decided to go back to Cu Cut for dinner tonight.

Tomorrow, we head home. We hope we get out of “Dodge” before Spain might declare martial law!

Babs Says: Well-off Grandma, Chandelier family, Window Washer Woman, Stooped-over old lady, Fortunate teenager, Naked Man, Good Wife, Potty Man, Show-off family, Dog Lady, Bald Bachelor – it is amazing who I have seen while sitting on the balcony overlooking the courtyard. At least I did not witness a murder as in “Rear Window”.

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