We made it to Barcelona, as did our bags. I worked my way through my first Spanish conversation (necesitamos dinero pero we can’t get the ATM to work). Got to the hotel. I stepped out of the taxi, stretch, relish in the fact that it is a gorgeous day in Barcelona. I step away from the taxi.
A gust of wind and a hoooonk wiz past me as the motorcycle I stepped directly in the path of goes by, driver shaking his fist. The taxi driver is laughing at me.
I have arrived.
The hotel is fantastic. The shower water falls from the ceiling, or what it feels like, heaven, and we get ready for dinner. Side note, guess who is 100% makeup-less these next four months. It’s already an odd feeling experiment.
Dad and I sent out to conquer Barcelona. First stop, a corner cafe for coffee (con leche), catching up and people watching. And what fantastic people watching it was. We venture down Ramblas, side alleys, little stores. We eat at a restaurant and order seven types of tapas. Who knew the pineapple chicken salad would be a favorite?
Finally, we set out to find a bar to watch the Barcelona – Madrid game. One with a local crowd and a lot of energy. After walking in and out of many (too empty, too creepy, too young, too… Risqué?) I spot Molly’s Irish Pub. Full of locals downstairs, upstairs, on the stairs, in the windowsills, on the cabana-like beds in the back. We Are The Champions is playing as we walk in. This is our spot.
And what a place to be. Barcelona was always ahead or tied, 1-0, 1-1, 2-1, 2-2. Dad and I have no idea how long a game is… We think 80 minutes. Until the clock hits 80:03 and we say must be 90. Well, we think the game was final at 97:50… What we know for sure was it reached the temperature of the sun in there. But so worth it. The clock struck midnight, the Fresh Prince of Bel Air theme song came on, and I turned 22. And an hour later, when Barcelona won, the celebration was loud, We Are The Champions was on again, this time accompanied by every patron, and the streets were festive the whole walk home.
Not bad for day one.