We're more than halfway through our Spanish sojourn, and we have mixed feelings about Spain. Barcelona? Gaudi is awesome, with la Sagrada Familia leading the "top sights" stakes. The Museo Picasso was pretty good too. The rest? Meh. We could take it or leave it. People were generally unfriendly or uncaring, with a few notable exceptions: our hotel staff, the señora who ran a coin laundrette and the staff at two bars we ventured into.
Sunday, June 22, 2014
Logroño is a different story - that town is tops when it comes to food, wine and friendliness. Many/most people don't speak much (or any) English, but they are willing to try to communicate, and are happy little Vegemites, keen to ensure that you're enjoying your food or wine or whatever. We had some hilarious exchanges with staff in tapas bars, complete with sign language, charades and all. The young ladies at Bar Angel speak no English but there was good service and plenty of laughter. And our hotel? The staff went above and beyond in helping us, printing boarding passes, organising a taxi to the airport and arranging breakfast for us on our last day at stupid o'clock, even though it was really way earlier than they needed to cater for.
Logroño - the old bridge.
Storks. EVERYWHERE in Logroño.
We're in Madrid now and we loathe it. The city is dirty, crowded - seriously, you can barely make your way along the streets, there are so many people - and there are homeless, beggars, drunks and prostitutes everywhere. There is also a big police presence, which is more disturbing than comforting. Of all the places we've been in the world, we feel the least safe here. On the positive side, the architecture is stunning, the Museo del Prado utterly amazing, and we managed to get to nearby Segovia to see the incredible alcazar & the Roman aqueduct. But we're not sorry to be leaving tomorrow morning.
Segovia's alcazar. Fairytale castle.
We thought France's Pont du Gard was impressive. Nope. Spain wins. This thing is estupende!
We're seriously over churches. Blah. We appreciate the history and the architecture, but seriously? The over the top gory statues and the whole voodoo saints-performing-miracles thing? Geez, Louise. I'd far rather believe in science... I am looking forward to visiting St Paul's or maybe Westminster Abbey in London, but no more Catholic Churches, thanks.
We'll be catching a Renfe train to Seville in the morning. We only have one night there, but the main sight I want to see is the alcazar, so that should be plenty of time. It's also one of the few cities where I've booked us into a posh hotel. Looking forward to a bit of luxury and hopefully less people!