The feeling of place: Barcelona

On coming to a new city there are a slew of emotions that strike and pass while I slowly do my best to blend in to the city. From excitement and freedom to loneliness and displacement, the cycle never seems to change while routine continues to be my best ally in establishing my place in a foreign land with a foreign language.

But routine or not, there I was after a long night of that famed Barcelona night life and too much box wine, experiencing my first daylight dia in Barcelona — getting deliciously lost.

I spent hours weaving my way through the light-starved alleys of the Barri Gotic and El Born until inevitably, I found myself sitting in a square drinking a cappuccino.

Hemmed in by brightly colored balconies I stared and looked and glanced and watched.  Children were at play in the center of the square filling the plaza with excited squeals.

In a corner between the trees and beyond the rowdy noise an Orwellian sculpture of twisted metal rose in a sweeping arc, its lifeless gaze a silent sentinel. (It wasn’t until I left that I found out the plaza was actually named after Orwell.)

But nature doesn’t seem to care about this fact and gave the sculpture another purpose; a perch for pigeons.

I pondered natures impartiality with furrowed brow until I was distracted by an especially fat pigeon that wandered into my field of vision flapping about, picking up leaves in frustration and waiting in vain for the misplaced crumb that never seemed to come.

Standing stoically aside, barren trees point naked limbs at green-needled pines, waiting patiently for their season. A flag-stone finish for their fallen leaves.

As the cup quickly drained, I thought about how far I’ve come — 2/3 of my way around the world — and how similarly these scenes have played out throughout my journey. It’s the stage that always seems to change.

And what a stage this beautiful city sets for life’s little dramas.

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17 thoughts on “The feeling of place: Barcelona

  1. shadowkoba says:

    A great bit of writing for a great city! Always loved Barca and getting lost in her rambling alleyways away from the hustle and bustle of la rambla has to be one of the nicest ways to spend a day in the city. Thanks for sharing!

    • Bottlecaps & Broken Bits says:

      Thank you! I like to make a point of getting lost in cities, you always seems to see and experience more that way

  2. These 3 photos have an incredible atmosphere, in particular the second one.

  3. Gorgeous photos. Thanks.

  4. Barcelona is a city that I will never forget! I hope you just fall in love with it 🙂 Lovely photos!

  5. AiMeE says:

    What would you say have been your favorite country so far from all your visits?

    • Bottlecaps & Broken Bits says:

      In Europe it would have to be Spain. The food is incredible and the architecture is unique. In Asia; Nepal for the beautiful scenery and Thailand for the food and islands. I can’t really pick a favorite, they all have their pros and cons.

  6. Most definitely one of the city’s I’m passionate about, but unfortunately, which I still have to go and experience. And after reading this vibrant account of your encounter with the city I’m even more excited about getting ‘deliciously lost’ – as you put ever so succulently. Great post, fantastic shot’s!

  7. Beautiful photo of the sky! I am happy to have been able to call Barcelona my home for the past four months. If you need any suggestions on places to dine, feel free to ask!

    • Bottlecaps & Broken Bits says:

      Thanks! Lucky you, Barcelona is lovely, sadly I’m already back in the states. Next time I’m there I’ll have to take you up on that offer. Enjoy!

  8. Fiona.q says:

    it’s a city where i fall in love with Gaudi.

  9. Jas says:

    One of my dream city to visit is Barcelona. Lucky you had visited it already. Nice photos too 🙂

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