Last month, we celebrated our first wedding anniversary.
Instead of paper, we gave each other Barcelona.
7 days of staying in a top floor apartment in El Born.
With a winding, narrow staircase that went on forever
Windows that opened to rooftops, huge church spires
And the happy, relaxed bustle of life below.
7 days of proper sunshine.
Of brilliant bright blue skies.
Of bare legs and wearing sandals.
Suncream. Missed bits. Burnt bits.
Ice lollies for an afternoon snack.
Ordering Pimientos de Padron.
Cava with every meal but breakfast.
7 days of wandering in the Gothic Quarter.
Narrow little streets that twisted and turned.
Shutters that hid last night’s bars.
Shops that opened when they liked.
Everywhere the sound of chatter,
and surprises round every corner.
7 days of statues that changed their looks every day
And streets littered with colourful confetti.
7 of days gazing and then glazing
at early “Blue Period” Picasso works.
Of Park Guell, with its pretty tiled dragon,
stunning views, shady trees and talented buskers.
Of lying on picnic benches in the shade
and snoozing like strays or happy hobos.
7 days of blue tiles, watery windows, dragon-like roofs,
In a house that was more like an upright submarine.
For the first time really feeling like we ‘got’ Gaudi.
7 days of heading to la Sagrada Familia on a very hot day,
taking the lift to the top and standing, with shaking legs,
looking out at the city and trying not to look straight down.
7 days of heading to the beach. Picnic packed.
Cheese, bread, salsa, beer, crisps… all too warm
All too liquid by the time we reach the sand.
7 days of taking Polaroids – all of us, smiley and slightly tanned.
Of comparing our £2 cameras to the Impossible Project shop ones.
7 nights of staying out late, snapping street art,
(being stared at by curious locals as we posed),
of feeling like we didn’t have a care in the world,
and wondering what it would be like to live here.
Barcelona, I rather love you.
You were a rather perfect
first anniversary destination xx