Saturday, December 19, 2009
Hola from Barcelona: Day 1
A corner of the apartment. I forgot to mention how incredibly LIGHT it is, which makes Lee very happy.
This is how we spend most of Day 1. Lee sleeping.
Ahhh, European architecture. View east off the rooftop.
Loved this co-existence of modern and traditional architecture. From the roof.
The view toward the sea - straight ahead.
Well, it's travel blog time again! And, just too long away from Europe, I can tell now that I am back. (But I have to say my New York minutes give me a heap of so much I love about Europe - architecture, art, fashion just the way people live - small apartments, being one of them and walking, walking, walking. But...this is about Barcelona, not NY.)
We flew out of NY at Kennedy and I was dreading it. My last JFK experience and one or two or three before that was just yukky. Dirty, late, crowded. Well, this was not the JFK I knew. It was clean, there were about 5 people ahead of me in security and the plane taxied away from the gate only 10 minutes late. What was most noticeable is the people who were getting on the plane. Lee and I both just kind of stared at these most beautiful, cool-factor people. All ages, but they all were just way cool and there simply is not other word. Probably 1/3 - 1/2 of the people on the flight were Spanish. Great clothes, beautiful children, not a lot of makeup on the women, lots of smiles, people talking on the plane after boarding. Seemed like someone might announce there would be a party on the flight. 7 hours and 27 minutes after take off and only 1.5 xanax (I am happy to report!) to help me sleep, which I really never did, we landed in Barcelona. You gotta love no connections! We landed around 7:30 a.m.
The airport was EMPTY except for our flight. It is new and crisp and sparkling silver mesh with terrazzo floors and lots of glass. Quite beautiful. Even the customs agents were scrubbed young men. It was all very nice
We cabbed to the apartment and here I go again...I just have the best apartment karma. We are doing an exchange for our apartment in NY (but our host is using our apt. at a different time - she had other plans for these 2 weeks.) Esmeralda met us and SHE IS ADORABLE with maps for us and her list of favorite bars (which means food, here) and the place to buy bread and food and coffee. She works in the field of marketing, branding and design and so her little attic apartment on Avinguda Diagonal is wonderfully modern. It is not unlike our apt in NY in size. She has a much larger kitchen and smaller living space, but they are just one room, open to the other. There is one bedroom - like NY. We feel right at home.
The best part of the apartment seems to be it's location on this lovely old street - she says it is like the Champs Elysee in Paris, where she lived before moving here five years ago. Well, I wouldn't know never having been to Paris, but it sounds good to me. The next is this: The apartment is in the attic - but nice high ceiliengs - I think by attic here, they just mean the top floor. This is about the 6th floor, though I took a hike up the marble stairs from the entry and it seemed more like the 9th. I don't think they count the same way we do. There is a huge wrap-around balcony on three sides. It is very deep - much larger than the apartment itself. And here, I have taken some photos of the views.
We have done only one thing since arriving and meeting Esmeralda. Sleep. I cannot manage without it and we didn't sleep on the plane. So I am now up from my "night's rest" at 4:00 in the afternoon and ready to head out to find some tapas and coffee!
Ciao. Yes, that is really what they say in Spain. Ciao.