22nd April 2016
Every year I ask myself what I will do on the 14th of February. Nowadays I don’t expect anything, however roses or pralines still remain a nice gesture or not?
I remember me celebrating and decorating the breakfast table with red hearts back in the days. I admit: I was romantic. Today I’m more realistic. And the imagination of the prince on a white horse is erased on my wish list.
To celebrate this day anyhow, my daughter Melisa and I decided to celebrate Valentine’s Day in Barcelona this year. Without men! We flew spontaneously to the second largest city in Spain and the capital of Catalonia. From Palma it’s only a short distance flight and on sunny days we can even see Barcelona on the mainland. This city has something meaningful for me. The ticket for the ferry we took three years ago, is still in the car. Somehow it became a symbol of our journey back in the time.
At the same time I wasn’t aware of the fact that it would also be the end of my former job for an international lawyer. Right before departure the matter escalated. On exactly that weekend I had to make the decision whether or not continuing my work. My mood for traveling was equal zero. I was afraid of not enjoying the time like planned. My thoughts would be with the decision all the time till I would come to a conclusion. Going through all Pros and cons certainly one thousand times and hoping to do the right.
Finally we departed and I tried to concentrate more on the journey than being influenced too much by the dark clouds over me. It was already late when we arrived and decided right after the check-in to go to a near located restaurant. We started our holiday typically Spanish with green olives, aioli, delicious tapas and a glass of Rioja.
For the next day we scheduled sightseeing. We went to the city by metro and got off at Plaza Catalunya, the central traffic hub up to the famous strolling promenade Las Ramblas which leads down to the sea. The weather was lovely and we drifted with all the other people passing flower stands, artists and souvenir shops. Occasionally we turned off into alleys with countless cafes and bars. We stopped for a first drink at the Market de la Boqueria which we remembered from our journey to Mallorca three years ago.
With freshly squeezed juices we strolled down to the port. There were so many sights to visit that we knew it would be impossible to see them all on one weekend. Therefore we decided to buy tickets for the red hop-on hop-off bus to go to some places we had on our shrinking list.
Some world famous artists were born in Barcelona. Among those, the great surrealist Joan Mirò, Salvador Dali, Pablo Picasso and Antoni Gaudi. At first we decided to go on Gaudi’s trail, the famous architect and designer who was the pioneer of the Catalan Youth Style and Modernism worldwide.
We visited some of his architectural structures. Among those the most famous one, the Basilika Sagrada Familia, which is still today many years after his death not finished. The Parc Güell, where you have an amazing panoramic view over the city and Casa Batlló, famous for its dragon shaped roof top. And of course we visited the biggest European soccer field, the Camp Nou of FC Barcelona.
Finally we enjoyed a Gin Tonic with the beautiful sunset at the harbor. With view to the sea towards Mallorca and the slowly awakening nightlife in our back we chinked glasses. The trip was definitely too short, that’s why we will come back soon to see the rest.
Oh, by the way, the decision I carried with me like a heavy bag in the beginning was suddenly very light. I made the only right thing and quited the job. Here on the island not everybody is what he pretends to be. But that’s another story!
To be continued …