Hola a todos! Right now I’m in Barcelona with one of my best friends in Spain! For those who don’t know (probably everyone), I studied in Barcelona last summer, so this summer one of the things that I HAD to do was come back for a visit. This is only possible this week because this Thursday is a bank holiday in Spain (although I’m not entirely sure why) so most companies don’t work on Thursday, and quite a few aren’t working on Friday either.
So anyway, I rode down here yesterday with Bla Bla Car, I’ll get to what that is in a second, and got here in roughly six hours. Bla Bla Car is a service where, if someone is already driving somewhere, they can/will offer to give rides to wherever they are already driving for a small fee. So where it normally costs more than 80 Euros to get to Barcelona, I paid 30 to ride down with a man who works in Madrid and lives in Barcelona during his time off. This is great for me because not only is it cheap, but I also get to meet random Spanish people and most of them are extremely talkative! I absolutely love it. I love it, I love it, I love it.
On my ride down, a man in his mid-fifties drove (he was from Barcelona, even had the “th” accent). A man from Pakistan rode in the front seat (except he had an accent from Madrid and had lived in Madrid for most of his life). And the last person aside from myself was a wanderer from Italy. Everyone spoke fluent Spanish and it was really interesting to hear why everyone was going to Barcelona and just about their lives in general (during a six-hour car ride you hear everything about everyone). That car ride could have been awful, but with them, it was more than bearable. I’m so fortunate that the man who was driving drives to Barcelona and back every three days, so when I come back to Barcelona in a few weeks, I’m definitely going to call him up and ride with him.
Before meeting up with my friend, I had to get to where she was going to pick me up, so I had to take the metro to her university. So, after getting here, my friend was supposed to pick me up from her university but she was a little late. After noticing this, I decided to sit next to and talk to an older Spanish man for roughly 20 minutes. I really enjoyed talking to him, to the point that when my friend and one of her friends (who I also know) arrived in their car, I didn’t see them for quite a while even though they waved and shouted at me.
After getting back to her house, we went out to dinner at this place which serves mini sandwiches for one Euro. I’ve heard about it from my coworkers, and although it’s a “chain” restaurant, it was still really good. It was like eating tapas, but only sandwiches. When I get back to Madrid, I fully plan on finding the restaurant there, and I’m definitely going. After getting extremely lost on the car ride home, we ended up watching the tail end of the fútbol game, then her most recent flamenco dance (my friend who I’m staying with for the next couple of days dances flamenco in a small group), then the movie “Frozen” in Spanish, which was a blast. They really translated the songs well.
As for today, I got to wake up a little later. I’m going to do some work then her father is going to cook us some type of food that I’ve never heard of. It’s called “Pisto” and I’m really not sure as to what it is, but I’m pretty sure that it involves macaroni and cheese because it looks like my friend’s mother is making macaroni and cheese right now (which is totally okay with me by the way). After this, we are going to hang around and probably eat dinner at the bar/restaurant that she works at.
One note, most of my Spanish friends love their families and their towns and they really want to “show off” what they have and what they do, but not in a bragging way. They just want you to experience what they do. It’s so much fun, and it’s so interesting because, for the next few days, I’m going to end up living the life of a Spaniard in a small town.
There is an amusement park in Barcelona (how I have never heard of it is beyond me) and we are going to spend the day there on Thursday! I’m sure that we will do more than this-these are just the only plans that we have as of now.