Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Barcelona, Spain, Day 12

This morning we got to sleep in a little as we had a 10 am tour, instead of any earlier. So we get our act together, meet in the spot designated, sign off the ship (you have to sign in and out of the ship electronically so they know how many passengers are missing at the end of the day) (It happened on the first day of the trip where 2 passengers didn’t make it back to the boat on time, and had to fly to the next destination of the ship - Idiots). We make it on the bus, and the bus departs.

First off, the woman in charge of our tour, I can’t remember her name, had a horrible accident when speaking in English, as well, she mumbled. We did manage to catch her say that it was going to be a 2 1/2 hour tour, BY BUS…. no stopping. We were supposed to get off the bus for “Great Photo Opportunities” as the tour ad described (that’s why we chose to do this tour). Anyhow, it turns out, that she tells us that the Olympic Stadium, where we were supposed to go, is closed due to renovations, so we won’t even get to go see that.

J and I last about 40 minutes on this tour. When every single person on the bus convinces her to stop at the Sangria Familia Cathedral to actually get out of the bus and take pictures of something that isn’t “A GREAT PHOTO OPPORTUNITY VIA THE BUS WINDOWS” - she gets the bus driver to stop. J & I decided to tell her that we’re not getting back on the bus after the 20 minutes that she has alloted everyone to walk around this huge cathedral and take pictures. Our anxiety levels (for the both us) dropped DRASTICALLY as soon as we set foot off that bus…. (Another thing that was bothering me was a lady sitting across the row from us, coughing and coughing the entire time. (Smoker’s cough and she STANK like she smoked 4 cigarettes just before coming on the bus). So on top of mumbling tour lady, I had a heavy cougher next to me. Imagine!

We didn’t tell the tour guide that it was also her fault we weren’t going to get back on the bus, but with her mumbling and poor english, it just wasn’t worth the 30$US per person for the tour to sit on that bus for another 2 hours. Pregnant or not pregnant… I didn’t want to suffer! Neither did J! Plus we also didn’t want to start shit with her, so we just blamed it on Princess Cruises and walked off. We probably won’t get our money back, but that’s okay, shit happens. I am going to open my mouth once we get back and see maybe I can get our money back, but for some reason, I highly doubt it.

J & I had a map… so we set on foot to see some sites and then eventually slowly head back towards the pier.

First we stayed by the The Sangrada Familia, which is the only cathedral in the world which is still under construction. It is Gaudi’s dream, to which he devoted much of his life. At the time of his death in 1926, only one of the towers had been completed. The continuation of Gaudi’s project has become an unmistakable symbol of the Barcelona, not just because of its spectacular size, but because it also reveals the spirit of a city which always been committed to building its future.

After visiting the Sangrada Familia, we sat down for a few minutes with a slushie, and I don’t think I would have ever paid 7€ for 2 slushies. (8.89US or 9.90 CAD). OUCH! But, I needed the sugar in my body… and it was, well, refreshing!

After that, with our map in hand, we made our plan and saw a lot of stuff. We saw a lot of the monuments that we wizzed by on the bus, and basically from where we were, not including all the stops we did, it was a 40 minute walk back to the pier. So we took our time.

For lunch we sat down at a restaurant called Sandwich&Friends. I really enjoyed my sandwich, for some reason I was craving Pepperoni!

We walked through the Gothic Area of Barcelona in the afternoon, and it was gorgeous. There wasn’t too much shopping to be done here at all - it was all junk pretty much. I think I did get myself a necklace though - but at a store that looked very American.

From the pier to the ship (you could probably have walked it - but not me at 6 months pregnant), was a 4.60€ ride across the pier area, over a bridge too. It may have been a 20-30 minute walk, but I was zonked by the time we decided to head back to the ship, after a lot of walking from the Sangrada back to the pier area.

My throat…. still bothering me. I hope it doesn’t really turn into anything, that would be sucky. Why me? Why do I have to get sick in the most BEAUTIFUL of weather? (We’ve had SUN and Beauty for the past week and a half. Who gets sick in the heat? I can understand not dressing properly in the rain for example, or something, but in the most beautiful European weather? ME! Just me! No one else gets sick but me! Just my luck!)

Tonight, was “Little Italy” in the dinning rooms for dinner. It was cute, and boy I won’t say no to Italian.

After dinner, we headed to the casino (of course). Tonight I started with 100$ and walked away at the end of the evening for me with 225$. I am VERY impressed with myself and with the way I am playing the game. J on the other hand… he’s a little shark (if that’s the right word). He started out this trip with 150$ and is now at over 500$ in his pockets (including his original 150$). At the end of the evening he had like 535$ in chips, so he kept the 500$ in his pocket, and went with the 35$ to the blackjack table. He played 20$ and doubled his money, so he walked away. Quit while you’re ahead. That’s my motto!

We headed up for a snack to the 24 hour buffet, and I’m going to go read a bit and head to bed. Poker was good to me today - I’m still floating around on cloud number 9 with luck!

Tomorrow we’re in Cannes, France. Oh - I can’t wait!

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