Monday, January 7, 2008

And Exhale

Phew. The two week Christmas/New Year's/Reyes/Susie's Parents extravaganza has come to a close with the departure of Susie's parents at 7:00 this morning. It was a fun two weeks, but definitely on the exhausting side. How exhausting? Here's what I've done in the past two weeks, roughly in chronological order:

Went to the Mercat Lesseps
Christmas presents
Go to airport
More presents
Cooked Christmas dinner
Ate Christmas dinner
Went to the Maritime Museum
Ate sushi
Hung around the hotel
Played hearts/spades
Ate grapes
Read The Reluctant Fundamentalist
Went to a Barça game (Barça tied 2-2)
Explored Monjuïc
Had excellent risotto and roast duck
Ate the World's Best Sandwich (according to the Times)
Went to the Catalan National Art Museum
Followed the Iowa caucus and New Hampshire primary
Went to the Reyes parade
Went to an Espanyol game (Espanyol won 3-0)
Rode the Bus Turistic
Explored Park Güell (twice)
Got/gave Reyes presents

It should come as no surprise that I slept for 13 hours last night. I'll try to post more on some of the subjects I haven't written about already, but for those of you considering a trip to our fair city, the highlights were Park Güell, the Art Museum, Monjüic, and both football games (for very different reasons).

I'd gotten into something of a routine until Christmas rolled around, and it was definitely good to see parts of the city that I don't get to all that often. It's not that routine is bad, or that I wasn't seeing the beauty that Barcelona has to offer (I spend two hours at a café each week on Avigunda de Gaudí, sandwiched between his Sagrada Familia and Hospital de Sant Pau, reading philosophy), but there are things you forget about, and there are things you see that get put into perspective by exploring a city like this. Does it require more effort? Sure.

But it's worth it.

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