El albergue

El albergue

Friday, August 10, 2012

Bits of a trip

La Costa Brava, north of Barcelona, is simply beautiful

Last week, I went on a sort of last-minute trip with a group of friends to the beach near Barcelona.  And while there is no way I can show you everything I saw and experienced, here are a couple little highlights of moments from those lovely 5 days…

The moon rises from behind the hills, an amber eye casting its glance on the world spreading out before it, on us, five sardines stuffed into the bright blue of our car and heading steadily on down the road to Barcelona.  It sways from one side of our windshield to the other as we follow the twists and turns of the highway, alternately blinking off behind one hill and reopening its lucid iris to blink yet again behind another hill, effectively shutting off its light from our own eyes.  And yet its glittery bronze aura continues to give away its presence, a sure, mystic sign that the face of the goddess of night has hidden itself for but just a moment and is soon to shine forth again.

Now this is the life.
There’s a girl zooming past us in the street, her body bent forward over the steering wheel as she glances back to change lanes and glances forward to check the upcoming round-about.  She’s got a cigarette dangling from her lips, its extreme tip barely held in place by the faint pressure of her concentrating mouth – rather in the style of someone from a cartoon.

We sit on a bench near the Arc de Triomf, relaxing beneath the shade of the trees as we watch an old man methodically breaking apart a baguette and tossing it in handfuls to the flock of pigeons swarming about his feet.  The bread finished, he starts to walk away, and the pigeons sort of ebb around him, uncertain whether to stay near the food abundantly scattered about or follow the one who so generously just gave it to them in hopes for more.  A few go with the latter option, and the old man smiles when he sees them, amused by their waddling along behind him as he turns the corner.

Brazilian couscous for breakfast prepared by the mother of two of the girls on the trip – De. Lish. Us.  A simple steamed mixture of corn meal, yucca flour, coconut, and butter – De. Lish. Us.

The smell of evergreen trees at the camp site near the beach takes me back to happy memories of camping with family.  Breath deep and sigh.  And smile as the earthy, green scent works its way down to the bottom of my soul.

The gentle waves of the sea rock us back and forth as we float, arms and legs outstretched, on its surface.  The water is chilly, not as cold as the water off the coast of Central California, but chilly enough to completely take away the overwhelming heat of summer.  It makes me want to stay out there all day, simply soaking in the cool so that I can take it back to Madrid with me.

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