Back From Spain

And I’m back.  And totally jetlagged. Spain was great – a fabulous country.  I will definitely go back again. Also, it turns out that "vacation" vacations do have some nice perks over "adventure" vacations: Being able to brush your teeth without worrying about getting sick. Being able to eat fruit from street vendors without worrying about getting sick. Knowing that you’re not totally screwed if you lose your passport. Not stressing about safety when calling a cab. Western toilets. Oh, and amazing wine and cheese.  Though, the exchange rate is rather killer. Next trip?  I’m thinking back to south america …

The Guggeheim in Bilbao

The last stop in my trip to Spain was Bilbao.  The city in recent years has become an international destination with the building of the Guggenheim.  The building, designed by Frank Gehry, is shaped like a “ship” with fish-like titanium scales.  I loved how it caught the colors of the city at different times of day. The collection housed inside of the Guggenheim was much smaller than I expected.  The temporary Munoz exhibit was very good, and my appreciation for Richard Serra grew after seeing his permanent pieces.  But overall, the building itself much overshadowed the art inside.   the …

San Sebastian

San Sebastian is an absolutely gorgeous beach town.  Unfortunately, it got hit with a case of “seattle weather” while I was there…. so there wasn’t a lot of frolicking on the sand.  Fortunately, Spain summer sales started that Monday – so I ended up being pretty productive anyways.  🙂   looking down at san sebastian relaxing with sangria & new yorker   window dressings   seaside soccer on the beach   merry-go-rounds beach  can you hear me now? twilight near the beach

La Sagrada Familia

La Sagrada Familia is Gaudi‘s “masterpiece.”  Construction on the temple began in 1882, and has been ongoing ever since.  Gaudi died in 1926, and so several different architects have been tapped to flesh out the master’s design. It was especially interesting seeing the interior of the temple, which had progressed significantly since I was there 4 years ago. the famous shape of the la sagrada familia      the soldiers were modeled after the shapes on the la pedrera’s roof   parts of the passion facade   sculpture of jesus   ceiling of the temple    an unfinished stairwell   …

Random Barcelona

A few random street shots…   while walking through the Barri Gotti (Gothic Quarter), we came upon this wedding reception.   these for-rent red bicycles were everywhere   the building fronts were so, well, european (for lack of a better word)      a clothes rack in the apartments across from us   peering down from the apartment   bicycles in high places

Spain Wins Euro Cup 2008!

It was the first time that Spain won the Euro Cup 2008 in 22 years.  (And the first time in about the same number of years that I watched a soccer match.) The game was in Austria, so the viewing location was a bar in the Barri Gotti. The celebration in the street afterwards was particularly memorable… and also where I learned the life skill of operating an SLR with one hand, while have a beer in the other.     folks were lined up on the street to see in…     …and the celebration starts     friendly …

Casa Batllo

Unfortunately, I was only able to see Casa Batllo from the outside this trip (it was closed when I tried to go).  It’s one of my Gaudi favorites.  

A Fabulous Barcelona Day

Yesterday was my first full day in Barcelona. It was a fabulous. My friend Chris and I started at Museu Picasso. My favorite part of this museum is Picasso’s Las Meninas study… (He did several interpretations of Vellasquez’s Las Meninas, which I saw in Madrid a few years ago.) The current temporary exhibit displays the work of several other artists who have done Las Meninas interpretations. It was great. Next, we headed to Gaudi‘s Parque Guell, took pictures and had lots of sangria. At night (and this was the coolest part), we went to Gaudi’s La Pedrera for a rooftop …

La Pedrera de Nit

  On the plane to Spain, I read that there are sometimes nighttime concerts at La Pedrera, one of my favorite places from my previous Barcelona trip. After asking around, we got tickets for “Noches de verano en La Pedrera.” The musician that night was Marc Ayza – he & his band were fabulous. All & all, it was just a wonderful experience:  great music & good cava in the surreal surroundings of Gaudi‘s La Pedrera rooftop.