May 12, Thursday ...We had a late morning today. Decided we needed to do laundry before we head out on our cruise tomorrow, so after breakfast we headed out to El Centre de la Vila. This is a mall two blocks from the beach next to an apartment complex and has a public laudromat called Diamond. For €4,25 per load we washed our clothes. For another €2,50 we got a cupful of detergent. A smarter, more economical thing to do would have been to go to the super market downstairs in the mall and buy detergent for €1,24 since we had 2 loads of clothes! Anyway, we sat in the courtyard while DS played. While clothes spun in the dryer, we walked over to the Moll de Gregal, a collection of restaurants and stores on a pier jutting out over the Barceloneta beach. We went down by the beach to one of the restaurants - La Fonda Del Port Olimpic. I finally got the vegetarian Paella and some spearmint infused tea. The Paella was good but I am not a huge fan, so I don't think I did justice to the food. DH had the lunch menu - gazpacho soup, mussels, some beef dish (that DS really enjoyed) followed by chocolate mousse (that DS wanted seconds of!). Again, food was nothing to write home about but the mall is a nice place to walk around and while away some time. With laundry done we headed back to the hotel for some much needed 'siesta'!
After a lazy afternoon, we headed out via metro to Placa de Catalunya. My friends from India were in town for our reunion cruise and we were hoping to meet them in front of cafe Zurich at Placa de Catalunya. After a 20 min ride via L4, then L1, we were in front of Cafe Zurich. Meeting up with my college friends was amazing - was seeing them after almost 4 years! Their 2 daughters and my DS had a great time together over dinner at La Puma Pizzeria grill on La Rambla. Pitchers of sangria, salad, tapas, pizza, pasta led to some great conversation about good old times and some new times.
We rounded off the night with some good mojitos in the hotel lounge on the second floor roof-top. It was a very nice sit down area that we had completely missed before - atmosphere was nice, drinks were fairly good and we could take our 4 year old along!
Today is day 5 in Barcelona, half our trip is almost over and there is still much to explore in the city. One could spend weeks exploring various areas in the city depending on ones interests...for an amateur photographer the city provides ample opportunity and excitement. The one thing I didn't venture out to do was take pics of people here....I love candid people shots but am almost always hesitant to explore and experiment in this area.... of course my hopes were high after seeing 'Vicky Cristina barcelona' but unfortunately I feel like Javier Bardem was an anamoly....sadly no one half as drool-worthy as him has been spotted - maybe they are all hiding in Oviedo! For all my single (or not!) male friends tho, DH will confirm that there are plenty of ogle-worthy females...:-P....although I argue that people watching in Rome is more pleasing to the eyes and soul!!!
Tomorrow is cruise day....we'll be joined by another friends' family...blogging may not happen due to lack of connection but will continue to jot down notes about the journey.