Receso a Pamplona

The first thing one must do upon arriving in a new place: sniff out the best pastries and the strongest cup of coffee. An easy feat in Pamplona! Continue reading Receso a Pamplona

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Ordesa y Monte Perdido National Park

We said goodbye to Torla, and a big hello to Ordesa and Monte Perdido!  The parking lot was full of Spaniards decked out in fancy (read: never worn) hiking gear, most of it a bright, bright red, which I imagined was just a bit of homeland fanaticism.  We wore all the clothes we brought with us, mixed and matched with no particular fashion goal in mind, just warmth, and even then, the weather took us a bit by surprise.  But when we started on our trip, we enjoyed mild temperatures and beautiful autumn colors. After a couple of hours of … Continue reading Ordesa y Monte Perdido National Park

Goodbye Barça

Somehow I was already on my last day in Barcelona, with a flight that took off at four.  Needed to make the most of it.  And quickly! Stopped for café solo and an ensaïmada at Demasié Café and read Le Monde for an hour or so before moseying on over to Gràcia, where I found myself in the midst of a parade!  Trucks drove down the street and people were throwing bags upon bags of candy to the children lining the sidewalk.  Some kids turned their umbrellas upside down, their gains exponentially greater than their peers.  Even so, everyone got … Continue reading Goodbye Barça

Desde la Barceloneta a Montjuïc

I headed east to La Barceloneta to finally get a glimpse of the Mediterranean.  And it was magnificent! Besides the sea, you’ve got to go to Bo de B!  It seems like every single American in Barcelona lined up outside the shop for one of their massive sandwiches.  Mine came with tortilla (omelet)…and about five hundred other things, including tomato, lettuce, onions, bell peppers, corn, lentils, fresh herbs, two sauces – I’m sure I’m missing a few dozen other ingredients.  It was definitely worth the wait…I love sandwiches! Next on the itinerary was Montjuïc – a long walk from Barceloneta, … Continue reading Desde la Barceloneta a Montjuïc

Buenas migas

Buenas Migas is really the perfect name for this small Barcelona chain, specializing in focaccia and scones (vale, vale).  And it’s the perfect place for a quick breakfast on a weekday morning.  After quite a few sugary breakfasts, I couldn’t pass up the focaccia de verduras.  Though inarguably Italian, my focaccia was topped with some lovely Spanish olives, with which I’d first fallen in love two months earlier in Sevilla. But let’s not overlook the café con leche!  Smooth and warm, it was wonderful accompaniment.  Far superior to most of the café crèmes I’ve had in France.  I wish I … Continue reading Buenas migas

Gràcia

Without a doubt, Gràcia was my favorite neighborhood in all of Barcelona.  It was all bistros and cafés and markets and children playing soccer and dogs chasing behind them.  I had the best pan tostado con tomate here, watched El discurs del rei (The King’s Speech) in a small theater with elderly barcelonés, played in original version with Catalan sub-titles!  Really, if I had to choose a place to live in Barcelona (could we all be so burdened…), I’d pick Gràcia. Treats are never too far from my heart, nor my stomach.  Gracias, Gràcia. Continue reading Gràcia