Frank Gehry's Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao, Spain
I go to the ticket counter, where is the bus? They wave me back to the bus stop. There are not very many people there with luggage who look like they might be going to Barcelona also. At 9:45 the bus finally shows up. How can they be so late already this early in the morning? Then after about an hour and a half of travel, I realise, this is the milk run. We spend about 20 minutes on the highway then spend about 40 minutes getting off the highway, into the city center, pick up one person, then get back to the highway for another 20 minutes then another 40 minutes getting to the next podunk town, repeat again and again and again until 6:30 pm. Leon Cathedral, Spain
It's hot on the bus, it's only about 20% full, but I always have someone sitting next to me, we have seat assignments but it never occurs to anyone that they could possibly just find an empty seat somewhere else so we can spread out a bit. I would have done it myself but I was on the window seat and each time I had some fat Spanish dude next to me. We stop once for 25 minutes for a snack, then 45 minutes again for a disgusting roadside diner lunch. yuk.
We finally get to Barcelona, I was hoping that perhaps the bus would stop at Sitges along the way seeing as how we have stopped at every other little village along the whole entire coast. Nope. After trying to find Spain's especially well camouflauged metro system, including converting a major rail terminus into a gymnasium but neglecting to remove all of the train signs on it, I finally get on a metro to the main station then manage to get my train to Sitges.
La Mesquita, Cordoba, Spain
La Mesquita, Cordoba
Now I am not certain what my stop in Sitges is called. They have a very good system here of naming the metro stops with obscure names, not the name of the town it is in, how sensible would that be. They also have a very good system of not putting up station name signs on the platforms, so even if you know the stop name you can't read it anywhere. At one stop quite a few people get off, but I reckon, after 1.5 hours of standing on the train, that we still haven't gone the 30 minutes the trip is supposed to take. The train leaves, I can now see the ocean. Drats I've missed my stop. Well I can get off and go back. The train keeps going. Forever. And ever. Sheesh man. Finally it stops and whaddya know, there is a sign I can see and it says Sitges! Woohoo!! I find my hotel, it's now 9:00 which is only marginally embarrassingly early to arrive for dinner. And I had a nice dinner!
Alhambra tile detail
So today I will potter around, maybe sit in the sun for only an hour to top up the sunburn, and spend the rest of the day checking out this town. It's got lots of nice places, so I can easily make myself happy here. You don't have to check out of hotels till 12 noon so I will hang here till the last minute then go to Barcelona, check into our hotel and meet Cailli at the metro, which is a risky thing to do, because Cailli, like all mining engineers, has no sense of direction and is forever going in the wrong direction, (even though she can read a map). It'll be fun!