Without a cloud in sight and the sun burning down, there was only one possible thing to do today–beach day. We had intended on getting an early start to things and navigate our way across the city, but were stymied by a sudden influx of foreigners who have no idea how the elevators work in this hotel. To be fair, they are a bit confusing: you have to select your floor outside the elevator, as there are no buttons on the inside. Anyway, the result was extremely long wait times getting down for breakfast, getting back up to the room to shower, and getting out of the hotel. To let some of the crowds dissipate, Clara and Jeff decided to head down the ol’ Diagonal for some quick shopping. Sure enough, things were a bit more sane around the hotel by noon and it was high time to hit the surf.
The journey down was fine, if not a bit precarious with the seatbelt-less manual wheelchair. Once we hit the beach it was time for some over-priced patatas bravas (Jeff’s obsession) before fighting our way through the crowd to find a nice place to sit, sun and swim. Being Jeff’s first time to a European (read: topless) beach, he wasn’t sure what to expect but figured it would be a lot of old men and women exposing themselves to the horrified younger people who were attempting to gouge out their eyeballs. While there was quite a bit of nudity, it was neither scandalous or horrific, except for the naked young children who set up shop directly in front of us, leaving us with no where to cast our eyes without looking like perverts. Also, a couple got into a huge tiff behind us when one of the parents threw sand in a small child’s face, then they taunted the child, then they fought about it. Having said that, the naked children were probably the most uncomfortable part of the whole ordeal.
Oh and also the constant near drownings. Turns out Jeff isn’t quite the swimmer he once was and his nose has become completely useless at keeping water out of his lungs. As a result, the swim, although hilarious, was also a constant battle of keeping Jeff’s head out of water long enough for him to spit out all the salt water ingested from the previous large wave. Unfortunately, there were no fatalities, so our families will have to wait a bit longer for their free trip to Barcelona to mourn our loss. Fingers crossed for Thursday when we go for a solid wandering of La Rambla: Jeff is sure to get stabbed there.
All-in-all, today was a pretty relaxing day, completed with dinner at Nuria. This probably means nothing to most people reading this, but Clara’s younger sister is named Nuria and we can now say that the restaurant named after her has crappiest patatas bravas in town (one word: …currymayonnaise). Jeff intends on taking this out on Nuria when he returns to Canada.
Another day in the books, although probably boring for our dear readers. Never fear though,we will be back with more excitement tomorrow when we get back to more touristy things.
– Jeff and Clara