Waterbaby …

Yesterday I went waterskiing! Despite the very early Saturday start, it was worth it – the weather was windy, but really warm and sunny.

This is my third time on water skis. Last year was the second time I’d ever been, and having done it once before (and not been tooooo bad for a first timer) I thought I’d go straight on to the rope. Newbie waterskiers can start off holding a bar at the side of the boat, but I’d been there, done that … anyway, long story short, last year I could barely stand up. I had very unstable waterskis, apparently, not ideal for beginners. Honest.

So, this time I was back on the bar to start with, with more stable skis, and wow, it was so much easier! This time I managed to actually ski on the rope, standing up properly (knees still knocking, but hey ho). I still have a way to go before I (deliberately) move on to just one ski :)

Today my arms ache, but I’m definitely going back next year!

Weekend in Barcelona

I spent last weekend in Barcelona on holiday. I’m gutted we only had three days, it wasn’t long enough to really see as much of the city as I’d like, it’s a fantastic place (would definitely recommend to anybody who hasn’t been!).

I met my friend who had been attending a conference and we stayed in the Hotel Arts, which is a super-posh hotel so we were pretty spoilt I spent Friday morning lounging by the outdoor pool and clearly didn’t realise quite how hot the sun was, because I ended up a little sunburnt! Unfortunately this meant I was restricted to wearing the same t-shirt for the rest of the week … (joke … but I do have white lines!)

We walked along the beach in the afternoon and I went paddling – the water was COLD! We also went around La Catedral in the afternoon, which was nice except that it is currently covered in scaffolding. We visited the Aquarium – the shark tunnel is amazing, particularly the manta ray that smiled at us from above … very freaky.

Saturday the weather was once again glorious and we started off with Parc Guell … one of Gaudi’s amazing and slightly strange works of art in the city (I now have a model of the mosaic dragon on my desk …) It really is a beautiful place to go, especially recommend climbing to the top of the hill to get a view across Barcelona. We were really lucky that the visibility was so good, and have some great photos to show for it!

We visited Casa Batlla (another of Gaudi’s “hallucenogenic creations” – as described by the Lonely Planet guide!) – fascinating but very strange house. Well worth seeing and the audio tour was interesting if long winded. Worth mentioning Cervezeria Catalana where we had tapas for a rather late lunch, as well as Cacao Sampaka where we gorged on hot molton chocolate … mmm!!

The time seems to go so much quicker in Barcelona, I couldn’t believe it was nearly five by the time we finished … so we walked down La Rambla where there was an odd procession of very tall people We finished off the day with a nice meal, very late in true Spanish style … then following rather a large amount of wine and beer decided to spend an hour or so in the (outdoor) hotel jacuzzi! With more beer … finally made it to bed around 4am but well and truly missed breakfast the next day.

On the last day we went to see Sagrada Familia (Holy Family in English) – the church that has been being built since 1882 or thereabouts. It’s absolutely awesome for the sheer height as well as the fact that amid the amazing pillars and architecture it is a real building site. Yet again Gaudi got his hands on the architecture, and when he was asked why he put so much effort into the design of the tops of the pillars when nobody could see them, he replied that the angels would. After so much walking and sight seeing all I wanted to do was sit down and eat more tapas before leaving for the airport!

All in all it was an amazing weekend and definitely a city to be seen and experienced! Can’t wait for my next trip.