Monday, January 28, 2013

No Puedo Comer Cacahuates

Sagrada Família

I bet you've been wondering why I haven't written since my last extremely inspiring post. Since then, you've been waiting with great anticipation for what will happened next to Rachel Eisen as she begins this new stage of her life (and the life of her blog). I am so sorry for having kept you waiting for this long. As usual, it is due to my lack of photos. In fact, I have not pulled out my camera once since I got to Europe about 28 days ago (oops!) But this weekend, I went to Barcelona! So obviously, I brought out my camera to be the good tourist that I am.
La Pedrera | Casa Milà

We took a train from Montpellier to Barcelona after classes on Friday and arrived around 9pm. I planned absolutely no part of this trip, besides directing my classmates to the SNCF train boutique so that a dear old lady named Francoise could set us up with the best possible route to get to our destination (gotta love Francoise!) So when we arrived at the hostel named Hostel One, I had no idea where we were, how much we were paying, who was sleeping where, nothing. So when we stepped through the doors and were met by a kooky, clearly high-off-his-ass receptionist talking about free dinner, drinks, love etc., I didn't know if we had stumbled into the most hospitable hostel ever or some crazy reality TV show. Since we didn't get killed in our sleep, I think it really just was the most hospitable (and kookiest) hostels I've ever stayed in. It was also one of the cheapest at 12E/night (yes, 12E WITH DINNER).
La Pedrera | Casa Milà


La Pedrera | Casa Milà

However, instead of eating the free dinner prepared for us, we wandered off to La Rambla and found this amazing restaurant called Bar Lobo. This restaurant was everything we were looking for. Great atmosphere, light tapas with high quality ingredients. Basically, I could see this restaurant in San Francisco. I'm feeling Valencia St. So if you have any feel of the foodie culture in San Francisco, you know that means it was pretty damn good. I got something along the lines of tuna tartare and was extremely happy with my choice. We also got sangria and this amazing mojito that even my "I don't like mint or mojitos that much" self threw down 8E for one. Generally, the prices weren't the cheapest at this place, but were reasonable since they were tapas and amazinnnggg. Once again, if you understand my Valencia reference, you were probably anticipating this higher end price estimate already.
La Pedrera | Casa Milà

We finally left Bar Lobo at 1am and I realized that we were right next to the Hotel Meridien were I stayed with my mother 4 years prior....go figures. After this, we headed out on the town. We got some strange shots that they lit on fire and make us suck the vapor from at this super American/Anglophone shots bar called Chupitos that is the home of the infamous Monica Lewinsky shot. Are you questioning what that could possibly be? Think about how she touched American Politics. Still don't get it? Well you can watch this little video of someone being duped into taking one.
La Pedrera | Casa Milà

After, we walked essentially a 5K to the strip of beachside clubs filled with foreigners. We got these fun little tickets while we were walking that made us VIPs that didn't have to pay the cover fee. But don't be too excited by these "VIP" cards. They are even less amazing than the Jug VIP cards that you have to pay for. You might get free entry, but you still pay for drinks which cost about 12E/drink. That comes out to almost $16/drink. From our experience, the cover fees are about the same price but come with a free drink so you might as well just choose the club based on the reputation and not that stupid piece of paper no matter how excited your drunk self might get.

Park Güell 



Park Güell

Besides being a hub for foreign partygoers, Barcelona is also the home of Gaudi. This crazy artist designed a giant church that still hasn't been finished à la style of Dr Seuss. Now, I'm trying to figure out just how impressed I should be by this Gaudi character. Prior to this trip, I was like OMG SAGRADA FAMILIA OMG COOL! But when I went and saw the date. The construction started in 1882, and as my roommate so eloquently said, anything younger than the United States is not old. Obviously this church is extremely different than any other cathedral you've ever seen. Those were made in the MIDDLE AGES! So I am going to have to say that I was underwhelmed by the magic that is Sagrada Familia. To me, it kind of just looks like a crazy giant sand castle in the middle of Barcelona. However, we also stumbled across La Pedrera, an apartment building designed by Gaudi, which I did enjoy wandering around. There were some pretty intriguing designs but I think the best part was the pretty views we got to see.

Park Güell

All in all, I had a great time in Barcelona this weekend. I had been there before with my mom when I was in high school, but going there NOT during a) Christmas when Barcelona shuts down from the 24-26th b) with your mom c) without people your own age d) when you are 16 makes it a whole lot more fun. On the train home I counted up all my receipts and the whole trip came out to 250E with the train tickets. Obviously, if you know anything about me, you know that I overspend. So you could just subtract $500 million from that price if you do it on a smart budget. That smart budget would avoid red bull vodka at clubs unlike my dumb ass. This week, I'm slightly starving myself to keep to my self-appointed weekly budget. Hopefully my parents think that weekly budget is reasonable too!?

View from Park Güell

La Pedrera | Casa Milà


Also, in case you were wondering about the title of this post, "No peudo Comer Cacahuates" was the only spanish I learned this weekend. My friend is allergic to peanuts so our spanish speaking friend taught us how to say "I can't eat peanuts" which I proceeded to repeat a million times this weekend despite having no such allergy. Useful skills gained abroad! 

5 comments:

  1. Looks like a geat trip. I would love to see those architecture myself!

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  2. I love Barcelona! I've been there once, but I'm going back soon. The city is so inspiring and the people are so open... Cool pics too!

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  3. Looks like gorgeous and wonderful adventures!

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  4. OMGosh! This trip looks amazing!
    *Besos*
    http://www.cmichellestyles.com

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