Barcelona is an ideal city because of the pleasant atmosphere. That must sound pretty cliche but if you watch a movie like Vicky Christina Barcelona it feels a bit similar with an artistic and relaxed city feel. The architecture was beautiful and reminded me of Buenos Aires a bit. I loved some of the streets like the famous La Ramba which was nicely laid out for the afternoon stroll.
But unfortunately I could never stray too far from my hostel since I was having a work emergency. Immediately after checking into the hostel I walked to the nearest electronics store to purchase a new replacement laptop. None of the available laptops were what I wanted but a friendly Colombian Salesman helped me find one that I would use for the next few weeks. The keyboard and operating system were all in Spanish, not to mention a different feel of the laptop which made pumping out resumes take twice as long to do. A four hour workday would take six hours and I was already a few days behind. $742 later with a new laptop in hand I began my work. I always figured that possessions are always replaceable but I was clearly wrong. I wanted to cry. The next day I made an impulse online purchase of a new $700+ IBM Lenovo laptop similar to my broken one. I would have it shipped to Thailand or Bangladesh. That left me with two working and one broken laptop. I was still going to try and get the broken laptop’s screen fixed once in Thailand a few days later.
Since work was miserable and time consuming I didn’t do a whole lot in Barcelona. For one, I didn’t visit the famous beaches. I did walk La Rambla and its surrounding area down to the pier a few times taking in the sites.
A stunning plaza
A really plain food market with what seemed like only Spanish ham, fruit, and meat for sale.
I was fortunate to stay at a really welcoming hostel. Meeting other travelers here was quite easy and it felt good to socialize with others for a change. I shared a room with a group of recent American graduates, Canadian students, and a lone Australian traveler who acted like the Morgan Freeman of travel. The other four guys were quite novice travelers so it was especially cringe-worthy listening to the Australian and his advice about his limited travels in Europe to big cities like Rome or those “hidden gems” like Interlaken. The bunch of us did have some nice conversations, shared tapas, and enjoyed the Barcelona nightlife one evening.
Plus, the view from my hostel room balcony was one of the best yet. It may just look like a random busy city intersection, it sure was, but I thoroughly enjoyed making this my interim “office”.
One afternoon I took a super quick visit to fit in La Sagrada Familia, a church designed by Gaudi. This is something I really wanted to see despite the hectic work schedule. No, I didn’t even go inside.
Barcelona did not disappoint but I can’t pretend I did or saw much of it either. I did like what I saw and have made a mental note to visit again when I have the opportunity.