.::the rain in spain::.

22 10 2009

well, there’s that. rain, that is. and a LOT of it.

rain, rain, go away... :(

rain, rain, go away... 😦

i might be a little drunk…. i’m pretty sure i drank the entirety of a bottle of wine today. a half-bottle at lunch with sushi and then another at dinner just now. 🙂 a day in the life, i suppose… hopefully not forever more though… i want *people* back!! we all know i’m not a big talker, but, GOD, i miss having company. i love it here, but i’m itching to be around people i know again. (that’s me saying, i miss you! all of you… wish you could see this place!)

awful. awful. awful.

awful. awful. awful.

today i absolutely stepped out of my comfort zone. i got WET. for some reason, today was Torrential Downpour Day in the BCN. when i woke up, it was drizzling. by the time i went outside, it was gloomy and gray. it was around 11:30 (i slept in), so i decided that this rainy day would be perfect for sushi (i’ve had my eye on a place with a conveyor belt…!) and shopping (it had to happen at some point); i’d already exhausted every museum in the immediate area, and my only other plan for today had been to go to parc güell. i knew of a sushi place in the lower barri gotic that was supposed to be really good, really popular, and a really good deal. that was motivation to brave the rain (getting heavier by the minute) with my skimpy barcelona umbrella and my hoodie. it was about a 5-10 minute walk to find kaitensushi— it’s a conveyor belt sushi place, ever been to one of those? (i’ve wanted to go to one of these again ever since we went to that one in seattle..) but the great thing about it, it’s all-you-can-eat, not pay-by-the-plate. really, that place in seattle, it was easy to rack up a big bill. here? no need to worry! the tables were lined up around the conveyor belt and you just grabbed whatever plate you wanted as it passed by.

conveyor belt sushi!

conveyor belt sushi!

i tried some great stuff… for sushi, they only had about 4 different kinds of rolls, 2 pcs per plate, and some nigiri stuff too. in addition, they had rice, dumplings, tempura things, veggies, as well as some random spanish tapas (!) thrown in for good measure: meatballs, fried chicken, mussels, clams, even little baby conchs. i mean, i guess they were conchs. i had to try them. nope, didn’t like’em. anyway, my half-bottle of wine, the HUGE amount of food i ate (too much!), and flan for dessert was just under 9€, plus a cafe con leche brought my total bil to 10,95€. wow.

baby conchs?

baby conchs?

the rain had only gotten worse when i was done with lunch… it was at this point i appeared to give up on life. i began wandering aimlessly in the downpour, deciding not to care that it was cold, i was getting wetter, and that my umbrella was beginning to seem pointless. i was debating whether or not to go home and take a nap, or to continue with my plan and go shopping. it was quite near to the cathedral (& my hostel) that the real trouble started– wind. wind that blew the rain, quite in my general direction. it was coming down so hard that i was already wet from the knees down, and my left arm was getting wetter. i thought, if i can only get to the H&M one block away…! i took a rest in a doorway and contemplated my move. at this point, people were running just to get to any kind of cover, and i was glad i was in a tiny doorway where only me & my skimpy umbrella could fit… i hate it enough being wet myself… having to touch (or be in proximity to) other wet people would’ve been torture. my decision to make a run (fast walk?) for it to the H&M may or may not have been a great idea, but i’m glad i went when i did. turns out, the left side of the street (where the store was) was forming a river, and to get in there, i had to walk through it. (ford the river! my own little oregon trail!!) eff it. i went in, and got totally soaked, and at the same time, the river came into the store with me. H&M was flooding! awesome. i stuck around in the main entrance for a minute, gawking with the other people who were trying to escape the rain, took some pictures, then went on with my mission: clothes!! ahhhh i love an H&M. especially one in europe. they always seem to have better stuff over here, way before we get it at home. happy as i was to get H&Ms in the ATL, they don’t quite compare. i tried on a bunch of stuff (WOW it’s hard to peel off wet jeans… and it is amazingly uncomfortable to walk around in waterlogged shoes and socks. huh. who knew.) and ended up with 2 dresses and a skirt. even though i spent the better part of 2 hours in there, when i finally emerged, it was still raining. *sigh* what to do…

flooded h&m!

flooded h&m!

i went to el corte ingles a few doors down just to wander around… question: have y’all ever heard of the clothing company Desigual? i guess it’s just a spain thing (their tagline is “atypical spanish wear since 1984”), i haven’t ever seen it anywhere else, but it’s *everywhere* here. they have a store pretty much on every street here in barcelona, and they were also everywhere in madrid & sevilla. it’s strange stuff… waaaaaay too busy for me, and expensive too. actually, i kind of like the busy-ness and the patterns and stuff, but i guess it’s the clothes i don’t really like. lots of long dresses and big bustly skirts and strangely shaped jeans. the stuff i did like, dresses (of course) were like 150€ or something.  all you fashionistas out there can check’em out here: www.desigual.comdesigual080722

that el corte ingles didn’t have a supermercado part, so i walked up the street a little bit more to the really big store so i could maybe find some labello lip stuff. no such luck! ahhhh labello i miss you. actually i have plenty. but i wanted to stock up on more. did i spend enough time in there to kill the rain? by the time i emerged from el corte ingles, we were down to a drizzle. yay!!! i put the umbrella away and braved what was left of the rain. i was looking for souvenirs, but all the souvenir shops i was finding were pretty crappy. i went back to that market, la boqueria, for some fruit juice instead. this time i went right for the cheap stalls– 2 juices for 1€! sweeeeeet. i got mango+papya (interesting… but just ok) which was a very pretty pinkish orange color, and coconut+passion fruit (…i think… it was the most amazing pretty pink juice i’ve ever seen. and it tasted yummy too! 😉 i’m so getting a juicer.) at this point, the skies were clear and i felt free to just ramble along, back down la rambla. ummmmmm and guess what… you know the pet places from the other day? well, they were obviously not out due to the rain, but passing these closed-up stalls i’d hear an occasional crowing from a rooster. they keep them locked up in there!! no effing way! very. disturbed.

on top: mango+papya on bottom: coconut+passion fruit. both surprisingly awesome.

on top: mango+papya on bottom: coconut+passion fruit. both surprisingly awesome.

near home i happened to look into this store that appeared to be like an art collective, where they sell handmade stuff by a bunch of artists, but that was just in the entrance. i looked further back and it was the biggest, most awesome souvenir & art shop i’ve ever seen! finally. just what i was looking for. spent a while in there getting some stuff and then decided it was time to start looking for dinner… even though i was still ok-full from lunch. i was undecided where to go, and was thinking about just picking up a sandwich to take home, in case i got hungry later… i happened to come across a place on la rambla i’d read about, called attic, and decided to just go there. it was actually really nice… most expensive meal i’ve had here yet, but really good food. i spent about 30€ and got the second half-bottle of wine (note: at this point, i’m no longer a little bit drunk from all of that. shows you how long it takes me to write all this ;)), a “fresh salad” (which was huge, by the way… entree size, and really good!), and their famous ox burger. yes, you read that right. i ate ground ox meat. it was really, really good. either ox is very flavorful, or they use great seasonings. it had some sort of mustard sauce on it and came with french fries. loved it!! dessert was a 3-chocolate mousse (milk chocolate, white chocolate [yuck], and dark chocolate. good dinner. even though the bread charge is starting to get a little bit ridiculous. one little roll and they charge 2,25€ for bread service. wow. i call bullshit. here’s dinner:

salad @ attic

salad @ attic

ox burger @ attic

ox burger @ attic

three chocolate mousse @ attic

three chocolate mousse @ attic

now i’m at home… one more day left. there better be sun tomorrow, dammit. i gotta get to parc güell at some point on this effing trip. and, pack!! oy gevalt. so, to bed! big day tomorrow!

peace,
james

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