Day 15 of 400: Barcelona, Catalonia – Spain

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Today we learned another lesson, sit in the seat you are assigned to on the train.  When we jumped on the train, someone was in our seat…feet up and snoring.  So, we sat somewhere else which backfired because it was a domino effect.  After some moving around we arrived in Barcelona three hours later.
Checking into our hotel was a breeze at the Grand Derby.  In fact, upon seeing we were members of smallluxuryhotels.com (it’s a free membership) they upgraded us to one of their best rooms and included a yummy breakfast.  We went a couple of doors down to a casual Italian restaurant and ordered the 3 course menu.  We had a pizza, pasta Bolognese, two salads, two desserts, a bottle of water and two beers all for 23 euros!
After such a large meal we went on a long walk to check out the city of Barcelona.  We had been here before but came on a Sunday/Monday when most things were closed.  Last time we stayed right near Las Ramblas which is the main road, this time we are staying off the beaten path a bit in a less touristy neighborhood.  We took tons of pictures looking at all the interesting architecture.  We stumbled across a bar called Obama!  Really?  Sure enough inside had a statue of President Obama sitting on a bench-of course I couldn’t resist taking a picture with him.
After a couple of beers we stopped at a tapas bar to take some small snacks back to our hotel room.  We had been out all day and were ready to call it a night.  We were waiting for the bill, it was placed on the counter and Giff reached for it.  To his surprise, he was slapped on the hand by the spanish speaking women sitting at the bar!  No, he didn’t grab anything that wasn’t his and he didn’t touch anything of hers.  I didn’t see him get slapped so thought it was odd when he reached for the check again asking the women if that was ok with her without getting hit.  He then commented that he should make her pay for it.  The women and her husband spoke in spanish to each other and awkwardly smiled…did they think he was trying to steal?  It was strange and Giff was not happy about it!
We came back to our hotel room to find a bottle of complimentary spanish wine with two wine glasses and a business card from the hotel manager.  What a nice extra!  It’s the  little things that make something or somewhere memorable.

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