Barcelona is AWESOME… Paris is great because, hey- it’s Paris! But Barcelona I didn’t have a lot of expectations for, and am just blown away by how great it is. A few examples:
Gaudi: I have a new hero: Antonio Gaudi, whose work is omnipresent in Barcelona. He combines beautiful colors, nature, public development, and Christian faith to make some of the most beautiful and inspiring work I’ve ever seen. You probably have seen it too- many people think of Spain and think of bright colored mosaics (see picture, below). That’s almost entirely Gaudi’s influence. He not only painted and sculpted, but he built parks, housing developments, and public art that improved the lives and imaginations of Barcelonans to this day. Finally, I cannot state enough how much I loved his Sagrada Familia, a church still under development, 100 years after his death. I think it is the most beautiful piece of art I’ve ever seen.
Food: food here is awesome. Everyone says this when they visit Barcelona, so I won’t belabor it… but it’s true. Tapas, churros, and iberian ham!
Fun: like Parisians, Barcelonans know how to enjoy life. They are out late quite regularly (many restaurants don’t open until 8pm), enjoy beauty & dance (see pictures below of the Flamenco Dance performance Cyn & I went to at the Palau Musica Orfeo Catalan) and seem to know how to put people/relationships ahead of expediency & efficiency. It’s hard to put into writing how obvious that lesson seems to be, but it’s something we were reminded of a lot, here.