Bienvenido a Barcelona


El Día Primera

¡Bienvenidos a Barcelona! Hopped on a plane in Sevilla, and here I am! My first apartment (for the first week) is on the "main drag" of el barrio Sarría. After dropping off my suitcases and a quick change of clothes, I set out to explore my new neighborhood. Before I even shut the apartment door, my new next door neighbor, standing in her doorway, greeted me and immediately invited me to una fiesta happening that very evening! Una barbacoa on the roof of our apartment building! La gente de España, se quiero!! I excitedly accepted the kind invitation, and set out on my way. Note to self: pick up bottle of wine to bring to BBQ tonight. Little did I know what was in store for me that evening!

As I was strolling along (having perfected the art), learning and exploring the streets of my new neighborhood, I came to a lovely plaza (Placa de Sarría) which also had a quaint, "little" church (giant by our standards in the U.S), where a wedding had just finished. I lingered to watch the bride & groom emerge, all the guests cheering and throwing rose petals. I was thrilled and honored to witness it.

​​After satisfying my initial curiosity about the neighborhood, and gathering a few staples for the house (coffee and snacks!), I returned to my apartment and prepared for the party. Soon enough I heard footsteps going upstairs to the roof, and festive voices, indicating the party had begun. So I walked up the two flights of stairs and emerged on the roof. My neighbor's entire family was there - her husband, her three adult children with their spouses and children, and a few more friends. They were cooking on the barbeque, playing guitar and singing, the kids were playing... One of the friends quickly became my "escort" and he introduced me to everyone, explaining who was who and how they were all connected. It turned out that one of the brothers along with two of the friends were in a local band. Soon we all sat down to a large feast. My newest BFF hands me a plate full of unfamiliar, yet delicious looking food and says, with a wink, "Barbecoa de Barcelona! I don't think you've eaten this before." And he was right. He kindly named and described each delicacy on my plate. I listened intently and then quickly forgot (ha!) as I indulged in the yummy feast. Seated at a table full of amigos nuevos, conversation flowed easily, but for the language barrier. Ah! Now that my Spanish was flowing fast and fluently, I had come to Barcelona, where the majority of the population speak Catalan! Surely it must be very similar to Spanish, you say? Uh.... not even close! Ha ha! Thankfully, these worldly folks are all trilingual, if not more, and they understood my Spanish! After eating and drinking until I thought I might have to roll myself home, I was surprised to learn that now, the evening's festivities would truly begin.

What came next? A live magic show by a real, authentic magician, followed by guitar, singing, dancing, and laughter that sailed into the night air as we lingered for hours on that rooftop. What a lovely first night in Sarría, Barcelona.

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San Francisco, California

carrie@silverliningseeker.com

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