Sunday, August 5, 2012

Costa Brava...

...just like Galveston.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Festa Major - Vilanova i La Geltru

This was nuts.

The major festival of Paul's town.  At about 1030PM, all hell broke loose.  About 20 sections of dragons, demons, and freaks parading through town down the narrow streets with their own rhythm section.  Mixed with GIANT fireworks.  As we were walking to the center of town, it was hot as hell, but all the locals were clothed from head to toe and wearing straw hats.  I couldn't figure out why until the first parade section came through.

One would think this is a Catalan tradition passed down the generations.  Then Paul told me all of it was started in 1992.  Oh well...


 Did you all know that the Bacardi family is originally from Sitges. Hence, the Bacardi museum just north of the church in the center of town!  Senor Bacardi left Catalunya for the Cuban frontier where he developed his vast empire, starting with cheap labor and sugar cane. 

The museum is a must, especially for the Mojito crowd (Anthony Ledakis).  The original recipe written by hand is hung on the wall.  We sampled the different distillations of rum, and at the end of the tour, we all set at the bar and made our own mojitos.

A great way to start the night!  And yes, Brian, my shirt is tucked into my underwear...

Aguadulce..farewell to la escuela

Our last language class was Wednesday and we were very sad to see it end.  We spent over 60 hours this summer with Loli and Leyla, so we became friends and almost family.  They have seen us at our best and our worst. 
We got together for dinner in Aguadulce, a community surrounding the port of Sitges.  Aguadulce is on the far east side of sitges and is the "luxurious" part of town, with awesome smaller beaches and great dining. We dined Argenitine style, enjoyed some nice music, wine, and conversation.  Ronny, Leyla's mate, is a Swedish artist and Leyla is a model and singer. 

We will remember many things about our time here in Spain, but the people we have met (both native and transplant) will always be in our memories.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Monday, July 30, 2012


Dali was a genuine Catalan artist, born and raised.  But his allegiances to Franco and his extreme narcissism are kind of a turn-off.  Additionally, the Dali museum in Figueres was a let down.  Packed and poorly layed out.  More show than substance.

More interesting was the Toy Museum down the street from Dali.  There, we learned about the Catalan obsession with scatology.  They even include an ornament in the nativity scene!

Before the museum, we had lunch at a Moroccan cafe.  The dudes who ran it spoke Arabic, but our dialects were so different that we just spoke Castellano instead.  Interesting, no?

Sunday, July 29, 2012


Everyone told us to go visit Montserrat for this reason or that reason.  It's only about 40 minutes from Barcelona.  The best part about Montserrat is the approach.  There is nothing like it.  It is a mass of rock alone in the woods with the most unique jagged facade.  The hill climb was challenging for the Opel, but we persevered.  On the mountain is a very old monastery built to preserve and protect the Black Virgin found there centuries ago.  Legend has it the the statue was hidden in the mountain to safeguard it from the Moorish invaders.

The line to see the statue was too long.  So we just took pictures from really far away in the church.

A funicular took us to the very top where there were hiking trails and serious views.