Friday, May 4, 2012


We're staying in Ciutat Vella, on a quiet street a few blocks off Las Ramblas.  We rented an apartment for the night.  Had some great tapas last night, including some solid patatas bravas as well as calimari.

Woke up this morning for a jog along the waterfront, and on the way back got quite lost in the zigzagging neighborhoods of Old Town.  Instead of stopping and asking for directions, I just keep running and eventually found a big church that I recognized.  Brought a few croissants back to Emma to make up for my tardiness.

Some people here seem busy; others smoke their morning cigarette with a deliberate slowness, almost like they're waiting for friends to arrive.  It is a bustling city, to be sure -- garbage trucks holding up traffic and street washing trucks spreading city grime evenly across the narrow neighborhood streets.

I feel bad for the dogs.  You see owners giving them a quick morning walk, and the dogs seem quite dejected.  On the other hand, I saw one happy mutt -- no owner in sight -- and as soon as I wondered where he was heading, it took a dump in the middle of the stone street.

We went to the market.  It's pretty extensive.  The meat stands are most impressive: lots of ham legs hanging from the ceiling, but also skinned rabbit and whatnot in the glass cases.  Sharing a cafe Americano and tortilla patata for breakfast hit the spot, and I grabbed a ham and cheese sandwich to bring for the train.

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