Monday, August 27, 2007

Barcelona Quickie

Where Papa used to get sloshed....

The move out of the canal apartment in Amsterdam took less than five minutes. Johnny Mushrooms (or the character formally known as RK) called us a cab and we headed to the airport together. His flight left an hour earlier than ours, which gave Nicky and I time to grab a bite to eat and play Chinese Poker at the airport lounge.

The flight to Barcelona was a quickie. I'm so used to flights longer than five hours than anything less than ninety minutes is a breeze. I read a few chapters of Atomised, the second book from Michel Houllenbecq that Benjo gave me as a gift.

We walked out to the cab stand at Barcelona airport and there was no line. We could have taken the train, but we opted for a quick cab ride, which is a business expense. It was cheaper than expected at 23 Euros. Our cabbie let us out a few blocks from where we needed to go. The area where we are living has pedestrian only streets.

We walked two short blocks to the rental agency. The woman there showed us to our place and pointed out all the things we might need were a couple a blocks away (like the pharmacy, market, bank, and laundry). The apartment has pink walls. I didn't get to choose. Nicky found the place online. It's in an amazing part of town a few blocks from Bari Gotic and just around the corner from Santa Maria del Mar church. The Picasso Museum is up the street and we're about a fifteen to twenty minute walk from the Barcelona Casino, where I have to work for the next week.

After settling into the apartment, we took a walk. We stumbled upon the gun store that was featured in Bittersweet Motel, the documentary about Phish. There's a hysterical scene when Trey haggles with the store owner over the purchase of a 357 Magnum. Trey's price was too low and he walked out of the store. As soon as he left, they agreed to sell him the gun at his price. Trey was fucking around and didn't want to buy the gun. He bought a whip instead. I will post a pic of the store later.

We walked up and down La Rambla, which was packed with tourists. We stopped off at a cafe and drank a large beer as we played Chinese Poker. We took a trip down a side street to London Bar, where Hemingway used to drink during his time in Spain.

We had dinner around the corner at a cheap Italian place with amazing gnocchi. The dinner was around 20 Euros and we had an appetizer, two main dishes, sparkling water, and wine.

After dinner, we hung out in El Born square and soaked up the Midnight scene. There were a dozen couple dancing a waltz nearby as music played. Tons of people walked past us on their way out to party. Sitting down next to us, a young woman was on her cellphone and she was in the middle of a break up. Tears were pouring out of her eyes and she sobbed.

We had an early night for Barcelona standards. I have one full day to explore the city before I report to work at 3pm on Tuesday. Stay tuned for a pic dump.

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