Love it or hate it, the thundering pelt of water on the roof was a clear indication we were going to have to cope with this one way or another! I don’t use the word “thundering” here lightly either, this was rain that seemed to be pretty angry with the world around it! One step out the front door would have been enough to drown you from head to toe in a split second so staying indoors seemed like a pretty sensible option as they come!
The boat trip (as I’d expected was cancelled) although I was in the situation of having to assume this for most of the day as Alan finally got in contact to confirm my beliefs at 5pm. “I had a bit of a lay in” – You don’t say mate!!! This of course meant a change of plan (or at least a change of action seeing as there was no plan b for the day!).
The hostel common room was proof enough that there were plenty others in the same boat (not the one I was….oh forget it!). As busy as I’d ever seen the place, it proved a great backdrop to getting to know some of my fellow travellers and generally chilling and chatting (and playing the odd game of poker as well!). It actually made for quite a refreshing change to really sit down and do very little and in a lot of ways it was equally as productive. Had it not been for the rain, I might not have gotten to know so many people here and built a good friendship with them. I was pretty glad it DID rain in the end!!
With the downpour turning into light showers and looking like it was going to be gone completely by the start of the evening, we made plans to join in the fun on the hostel organized pub crawl. Feeling like this was all part of my “younger years” and had experienced the good old pub crawl many times in the past (and the consequences the next morning!) I decided I’d go with it and see how it went!
Well, not quite. €16 gave us basically free beer or sangria for the first hour and then a free shot in each of the 4 bars thereafter. We also had entry into the club at the end of all that thrown in. Maybe experience told a little (you wouldn’t have thought so in Paris) as I was pretty careful not to go for the jugular early on! All the beer you can drink for an hour is a pretty neat thought only it seemed some of those on the crawl had managed to finish themselves off almost before they started!
We were joined on the crawl by travellers at 2 other hostels and what appeared to be a few hangers on that had somehow found there way into the group! I got chatting to a rather lovely looking Finnish girl in the 2nd bar but was put off somewhat by her brother standing just a couple of feet away! She was very flirtatious but it felt pretty weird having her brother there I have to say! Maybe she picked up that vibe because as soon as we left the bar she was on the arm of another guy and pretty much blanking me! Oh well, some you win, some you lose, and some you’d just feel awkward winning!!!
We darted in and out of another couple of bars, downing our shots as we went before ending up somewhere near the beach and entering the nightclub. Vouchers were pushed into my hand before entering, seemingly offering a buy one get one free drinks coupon (bargainous!) and we filed into the club before almost immediately losing sight of those with us. I lasted about 10 minutes before there was no one around who looked vaguely familiar!
At €5 a pop for a beer it was a pretty good job I had those flyers! The beer helped drown out the sorry state of music that was playing. I ask you…Cotton Eye Joe???????? Seriously! They played it! In that instant I felt old and regressed 10 years to days when Oasis and Blur were battling it out to kings of Britpop and the damned song they were playing had somehow topped the UK charts. It sent a shiver down my spine!
I did eventually catch up with a few faces I seemed to recognise but feeling pretty shattered and the beer not really going down at a rate faster than a mouthful every half hour, I decided that heading home was the best option for me. It was already 3.30am and I guessed the club was going till 5 or 6am and knew I wouldn’t have lasted that long!
My problem from here was getting home! Now, in the light I might just have gone, “that looks familiar, I think it must be that way” but in the dark, somewhere by the beach and a mysteriously appearing indoor shopping centre that I had to go through in order to leave the complex (I’m pretty sure I didn’t come through any indoor shopping centre coming into the club!) I was, to the best of my knowledge, completely and totally lost!
Unsure which way to proceed I figured waiting for a taxi would be worth it! Worth the money it may have been but that is something I’ll never know as after waiting a good 15 minutes and barely seeing 1 car let alone a cab, I opted for the “ask people and hope for the best” option. Suddenly it seemed nobody spoke a word of English and it was only when a couple of Belgian guys found themselves in the same boat as me did we make any progress!
Upon passing a crepe van, however, it was obvious that they were utterly clueless as to where they were going and I had to find alternative means of finding my way back! One strawberry crepe (I wasn’t even hungry and I’m at a total loss to explain the strawberry filling!) later I was ready to immerse myself in Barcelona again, hoping somewhere just one person would at least be able to direct me to the Ramblas!
I did better than 1 when I got talking to 3 Portuguese guys who said they knew the way and would show me. We got chatting as we walked and apparently (considering my general state at the time, I’m still unsure if any part of this is true) they had just one €6M on the Euromillions! I’d probably been taken in hook line and sinker but as they declared our arrival at the bottom of the Ramblas, I found myself wanting to believe their story more and more!
Eventually then, some time well after 4am, I dropped, almost literally into bed!
Tags: Barcelona, rain, Spain, Travel