Sometimes it just happens and I never know why, but it’s very interesting to see how suddenly the planets align and, somehow, I find myself in the middle of something I could have only dreamt a short while ago.
In late November, after more than a year away from Spain, I got into a plane destination Barcelona. Family, friends, bars, food… (well, I had to work too) were waiting for me and, I couldn’t wait to see them!! Going to Barcelona always exceeds my wildest dreams, and this time was not going to be an exception. They were all there, we had lunch, dinners, lots of drinks, tons of laughs… I was the happiest soul on earth.
The last week of my trip was supposed to be a week long worth of walking towards Santiago de Compostela (check Wikipedia if you want more info why I choose that destination, I promise you the white wine and the seafood has nothing to do with it). But a big snow-storm in Spain the week before made me change my mind: Instead of walking through the mountain towards Santiago, I was going to walk backwards through the Monegros desert and valleys towards Barcelona!
I choose a starting point about a walking-week away from Montserrat and started my journey. After walking 6-7 hours a day for 4 days, arriving at the Monastery of Montserrat at night in the middle of the mist with all my body hurting and not enough water (I got lost for 3 hours following the wrong path), is something I will not forget. Hiking up to the top of Montserrat the following day with a friend and plenty of sunshine, was going to be the perfect end to a fantastic story.
Only one thing left to do… to go check out the IMOCA60 boats of the Barcelona World Race. We planned lunch at a restaurant close to the boats and I went to check them out… And then, when I got there, is when they told me the marina is not open to visitors yet. Next Monday they said. Whatever… I’ll be in a plane back to the USA next Monday!!
I missed them. I could see them behind the fence, but I could not get any closer. That was it, after a fantastic lunch with my friends and a million mojitos just a few meters away from the boats, we headed back home. I can only tell you that my trip back to the USA was a very hard one. Barcelona, Frankfurt, Los Angeles, San Diego… thinking I had missed them! Dammed!!!
So, when in Christmas week I found myself in an airplane flying back to Barcelona I could not believe it. Not only I was going to spend Christmas with my family, New Year’s eve and plenty of days with my friends, I was also going to be in Barcelona for the start of the Barcelona World Race!!!
And we made it. One day to go check the boats mid afternoon, and on the 31st to see the start of the race. Very, very impressive, and very glad I was there. I took lots of pictures that are not quite impressive as the real boats, but is the only thing left after their departure. Hope you like them.
And now, of course, I’m thinking about flying to France for the start of the 2011 Mini Transat… but that will have to be after a stop in Barcelona. Dammed I like that Place!