Friday, June 1, 2012

Barcelona, Spain part 2

The continuation of our Barca session. 
Remains of the Olympics
More of the same.
Since bullfighting has been outlawed in Catalonia, former plazas have been turned into shopping centers...sad. 

Why not! 
A walk through the Gothic quarter at night is worth doing.
Welcome to the dark ages. 
Camp Nou was the highlight for most of our kids.  
Forgot to wear my Real Madrid FC shirt.
I like that both bullrings and football stadiums have a chapel. I can hear it now, Dear God-let us win. 
At least someone had the sense to turn these into volume knobs.
Cathedral de Barcelona. Ms. D's brother was avidly taking pictures. I asked him why soo many photos, he replied that this needed to be documented so that would never happen again. He compares cathedrals to that of the holocaust!  
Stolen Mexican gold for God.
On the floor of the cathedral. Look familiar? The good news is that if you look hard enough, you'll eventually find what you're looking for. 
In contrast, Sagrada Familia lacks the trophies of the Spanish Conquest. A trip to Barcelona isn't complete without a visit here. Words and photos can't compare to physically being in the space. Sadly, our groups's tour was cancelled and only one of our student's was wiling to tag along with us on her free time. In short, we kidnapped Malak for the evening! 
One step inside and you'll realize how insignificant you really are and I'm speaking beyond religion...
Detail of the door.
No gold here.
In the basement there is a museum on Gaudi's process. 
Different species of turtles are at the foot of the columns. 
Try this at home.
Arch de Triomf leads to Parc de la Ciutadella. 
Kids tweaking out on BMX bikes.
Malak waits patiently for her vegan burger and patatas bravas. We loved that she was willing to try everything. 
My friend Patrick recommended the Frederic Marès Museum, and anything he says to go see is more or less a direct order. Want your mind blown? 
The first couple of floors are littered with religious sculptures and deities...hinting a little on the sublime (you might want to look up the real definition of that word). 
The original pop-up Bible. The two tops floors are an experience if you want to see what collecting items with commitment and passion is all about. There were scissors, smoking pipes, tarot cards, machines, toys, it, it was there.  

Barcelona, Spain Part 1

I have to thank the senior class of 2012 for the opportunity to see Barcelona in the flesh. The gig was simple: travel with 14 students, visit museums and other cultural institutions during the day then have the late afternoons and evenings free. Call it a win-win. 
Senioritis at the airport in full effect. 

Ms D chomping down on the first of many vegan burgers. 
MACBA (Museum of Contemporary Art Barcelona) is a skateboarder's haven.  
Didn't quite make the land.
The following 3 photos document an altercation between two boys.  

The kids wanted to take in the Catalonian vibe at the Hard Rock Cafe. 
4 out of 5 Catalonians own a French Bulldog-the official domestic pet of the region. Not only are they cute, but have the added advantage of chasing tourists on Segways. 
We eventually outran the charging pups.
Inside MACBA

One of the perks of having the late afternoons and evenings free was the chance to rent a bike and see the real Barcelona. I managed to ride about 70 Km in 2 days. 
 Parc de Diagonal Mar is worth a visit.

Random find no. 321:  Punk club in El Poblenou. I rode up to the building to snap a photo and met a guy who told me his band was playing later that evening.  
To my students I referred to this building as the dual speed loaf of bread. 
Barca punk band in action. It was nice to see live music again.
A student trip isn't complete without an obligatory aquarium visit. 
The kids were ready to kill Ms. D and I for making them hike up to Park Güell. I'm sure most were happy once they experienced the amazing views and architecture.
We combed about every aspect of the park. Gaudi is a genius.
Gothic quarter sculpture.
Along the corniche

Random find no. 613: Ska concert on the street. Thank you bike! 
Thank you bike and stairs. Yes, call me a cheater...the climb to the Olympic stadium, etc was a just a little steep. 
StairMaster 2000. To be continued...