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Like a jewel in the sun

And if Freddie can go on, so will I!

Mostly about the food.

They're not the greatest photos but I was, um, too busy eating. Having a (tiny) slice of 265€/kg ham was an event. The thing is, looking back through my pictures, there isn't one of Spain's gift to the world, the beverage that shines above all others with the exception possibly of ginger ale or Cointreau and lime but that's an issue for another day what I'm talking about now is CAVA! There it is, for a fraction of a moment, in the top picture, muscled out by mushrooms and chorizo. Honestly. The stuff is like drinking sunshine and honey, only the honey tastes like dry champagne instead of honey. The most wonderful part of it all is that, being a local thing, no-one blinks if you order it with a sandwich, or in the AM (the decent AM, you know, 11 or so), or everywhere you go. Magical cava — and much more pleasant than the muddy, one million proof Pacific spirit it shares a name with.

We wandered round Barcelona, between meals. At one point there was The World's Greatest Flamenco Guitarist — who really wasn't bad, and treated us to his rendition of Mozart and also Smoke on the Water.

Had a great view from behind a bush.

The Opera House on La Rambla, which was beautiful in the way most opera houses are.

It's made a hobby of burning down. To their credit, those plucky Barcelonians just keep rebuilding.

 

Visiting a Gaudí masterpiece (the word is open for interpretation) is non-negotiable. They're best described as saggy Art Nouveau (not my wit, unfortunately) and I'll own they're not my favourite buildings in the world. But I love the stories that go with them: the Sagrada Familia, for example, which is built with silent donations that trickle in and is also enormously weird. I like a mind that says, “Shall we put fruit on the cathedral? Why in hell not! Bananas! At once!”

And family homes that really feel like the ocean, cool and even and deep at the height of summer, I'm sure. Glass you could dive through.

Looking through my photos, I've realised that this is sort of all we did touristically — apart from the disastrous visit to that Poble Español place. Time is different when you're on holiday, I suppose, and I mustn't discount the amount of eating we did. (So much.) I can't wait to go back. I want to be there now. Barcelona, Barcelona, Barcelona, you wonderful city.

 

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