Sunday, June 15, 2014

All settled in this home away from home

¡Hola chicos!

This past week has been wonderful. We had a long weekend because of Pentecostal, a holiday specific to the Barcelona region. The holiday is like a second Easter. On our day off, we slept in and then headed up to Parc Güell. This was my third time to the park, but it was definitely much different this time around. Up until recently, the park was free for all people to enjoy, but now there is an 8€ fee to enter. Many people used to take their lunch breaks in this beautiful park everyday but now they will unfortunately have to take it elsewhere. There was also many more security guards around enforcing strict rules within the park. It was a bit annoying, but at least the beauty of the park still remains.

I've gotten into a pretty steady routine here. I walk by the beautiful Sagrada Familia every day on my way to work, get my café con leche from the same lady every day and I love to take a nice walk during my lunch break. Now that I'm settled in, it was a pretty normal week. We've had our bulk of students arrive already, so our work load has started to lessen.

Thursday night was the opening night of the World Cup. I'm not a big fútbol fan, but I love to root for Barcelona. The first night, we watched the Brazil game at a local Irish bar. The bar was packed with Spaniards and tourists alike. It's no secret they love their football here. The next night Spain was playing against Croatia. It's such a strange dynamic here in Barcelona. We have a lot of our Barça players on the Spanish team, yet many of the Catalans here do not root for Spain since they want to be independent from Spain, they do not associate with them. It was interesting because the bar was not crowded at all the next night for the Spain game. Spain lost terribly but the people weren't upset about it, many were even happy! Our waitresses even had the Catalan flag painted on their cheeks during the game.

This weekend, I walked around the city center for a bit and then headed over to meet my roommates down by the beach. The weather was finally gorgeous for the beach. But because of this, we weren't the only ones who had the idea to go to the beach. It was packed. We even walked farther down away from the touristy parts and it was still just as packed. And of course I unfortunately saw one too many buck naked old men, banana hammocks and boobs. We're talking, everywhere you turn.

That night we headed out to some bars, of course stopping at Sugar. Today, we tried to go to a big second-hand market called Lost & Found, but it was cancelled due to thunderstorms. Instead we just wandered around the city and enjoyed each other's company.

Fun fact, this Wednesday, the king will pass his crown down to his son, Felipe. The people of Spain, particularly Barcelona, do not like the Royal family. There have been several protests to revoke the monarchy and create a republic.

Amusing Photos of the Week:
Instructions for making cereal

Every Thursday/ Friday theres a long line of old people waiting outside my work to get into the tango club. Mind you I always leave work around 5:30pm...
We stumbled upon a very strange hair-fashion show right in front of La Sagrada
Apparently I'm the new face of SAE; I wonder if people draw mustaches on me
They do bachelor parties a bit different here. It's all about humiliating the groom, and they usually all match. Barcelona is a very popular destination for bachelor/ bachelorette parties.
Just another day on the metro

Also, wishing a very happy Father's Day to my dad, and all the other dads out there! XO

¡Hasta la próxima semana!

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