Sunday, August 7, 2011

Back to France

An exciting aspect of this trip has been leaving things open to possibility. Jacob and I both love that right now, October and November have no set agenda- we could go ANYWHERE (that our Renault contract permits). So it was with that sentiment in mind that we decided we'll leave Barcelona early and head to Correze, France for a couple weeks to house-sit. The family we are house-sitting for has sheep, chickens, ducks, goslings, chicks, a pair of mice and a rabbit so I'm really excited. Living in a rural setting with a hobby farm has been my dream so this lets me try one on for size and hope nothing expires on my watch.

In the meantime, we're going to enjoy the remaining week in Barcelona - be it ever so large and muggy. Last night we hung out and drank a couple pitchers of sangria with a Portland couple that we met back home through Couch Surfing. They are a bit younger than us and their Barcelona goals include finding a place to smoke hookahs and making it out to one of the islands for an all-night rave whereas we hope to finish our hot air balloon puzzle and maybe get a refund from the parking garage for leaving early. But despite our divergent interests, we spoke the universal language of desperately wanting to have a full-length conversation in our mother tongue. And it was a great excuse for us to get out and have a drink in the warm evening air.

Today we met a woman from Belgium and her 9 year old daughter at Cosmo Caixa (the science museum) and tomorrow we'll be camping on some property in the mountains for a couple nights - another Couch Surfing connection. Camping at actual campsites here is expensive (we were looking at about $50 a night) and we couldn't get a good feel on-line for the tolerance and safety around "unofficial" camping so this is perfect situation for us. Plus, our hosts have a pool we are welcome to use. Couch Surfing just continues to pay off for us left and right in ways that we didn't expect or imagine.

The pictures I've posted are from our visit to the Salvador Dali Museum in Figueres. The museum is built from the ruins of the Municipal Theatre which was destroyed in the Civil War. Dali oversaw the design and layout of the museum and it contains his drawings, paintings and sculptures from the 1920's all the way through the 1980's. I can't say we were able to see everything as it was very crowded and, in true Mestman fashion, we ignored what has to be the best warning ever to grace a brochure:

"A warning! If we take into account the idiosyncrasy of Salvador Dali, the origin of the Dali Theatre-Museum, then perhaps we ought to recommend you not to follow a preconceived route. However, despite this a one way route has been laid out. This only has the intention of guiding the visitor form the entrance to the exit without his missing any part of the Theatre-Museum. It does not have, nor does it wish to have, any systematic function nor chronological sense."

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