Remember that time when I said Ireland blew me away?
Well, in the same way, Barcelona left me speechless. Literally. My throat felt a little sore on Thursday night when I arrived, and by Friday at noon, all that’s left was a raspy whisper.
I sort of sounded like a shy prepubescent boy – if you’re into that. Side bar: I never lose my voice. In my ripe 21 years of life, I’ve only lost it one other time. So, leave it to the weekend when I’m visiting one of the most beautiful cities in the world with three of my closest friends from childhood to be left with pathetic squeaks and hums as my only form of communication.
It could have been a weekend-ruiner. Those who know me know I have a lot to say. And I was forced to stay silent, while simultaneously trying to ignore the flu-like symptoms that were creeping up on me. Runny nose, pounding headache, and an impending sense of exhaustion. At the same time, while I did feel sick, I kept reminding myself that I was feeling sick in Barcelona. With three of my best friends in the world. That’s the cool thing about being abroad. Whatever seemingly negative twist is thrown at you, whether it be life-threatening gusts of wind or poorly-timed laryngitis, it happens to you while in these incredible, life-changing places. Sometimes you just gotta take a step back and remember where you are. So, with the help of a Spanish pharmacist and the unyielding love of my amazing friends, I was able to still have a spectacular weekend. Emphasis on amazing friends. You don’t always need a voice to feel heard.
Key takeaways from Bartha:
- Espanol es moy difficult-ado. I guess in a practical sense, it didn’t matter that I didn’t have voice – I couldn’t speak the language anyway. Since being abroad, this was the first non-English speaking country I’ve been to, and it really makes a difference. Everyone knew we were American within seconds. Besides the blonde hair, American accents, and maps up constantly on our phones, I don’t know what gave us away.
- LIFE IN COLOR. Every city has its colors. Ex: London – black and gold, Dublin – grey and green, Oxford – gold and turquoise , and of course : Barcelona – orange and pink. It was such a stark contrast to the chique, yet monotone color scheme I see in London everyday. Everything from the rooftops to the market smoothies were bright and whimsical. Speaking of bright and whimsical – oh my Gaudi. Park Guell and the Gaudi museum (even just from the outside) are fantastical.
- FOOD. Cheese fondue, 1 Euro fresh-squeezed strawberry coconut juice, and warm, sugary churros with warm chocolate dipping sauce on the side. I’m just going to leave it at that.
- What’s that big yellow thing in the sky?? Wow, I really missed Vitamin D. I’m spoiled enough to be in London where there’s no snow, but to be in a country where I didn’t need to wear my down jacket…pure bliss. We layed on the floor in front of Plaça de Catalunya for over an hour, just letting the sun soak our skin in its glorious rays. It’s a memory I’ll keep in my head forever. Laying in the middle of sunny Barcelona, with three best friends, no voice, and a stomach full of churros. It doesn’t get much better than that, ladies and gents.
Stay tuned for next week’s adventures in Rome, Florence, and Venice featuring some very special guests along the way.
Cheers (craving Spanish tapas),