I had no idea it was Palm Sunday today and was wondering what the children in the city were carrying (I thought they were some fancy kind of kite), turns out they are palm fronds with toys or ribbons tied around them that are given to them from their godparents as part of the celebration of Palm Sunday.
I was very tired when I arrived home and was looking forward to a nap. I had a sleep, not a nap. Can you call it a nap if you sleep for nearly three hours?
I went into the city yesterday to finally replace my leaking, falling apart converse and typically had issues finding my size in four shops but fifth time lucky I took my new sketchers and headed off to meet my friend Will.
As I was walking a couple of guys said hello to which I smiled and returned the greeting. I got chatting to them and they wanted me to go with them. The guy from France was single, he told me this after he asked if I was meeting my boyfriend and the other guy was from Morocco and we chatted a bit as I love Morocco and I had a great month there more than a decade ago now.
I told the guys that I had to get something to eat before meeting Will but they kept insisting I should go and look at the football stadium with them – it was only a short drive away. I checked my watched, declined their offer and headed back the way I had come. While they both seemed very nice I was not about to get in a car and go off driving with complete strangers.
Instead I grabbed something to eat and headed to the Ramblas to meet up with Will.
We started at an Irish bar and watched the rugby. I was hoping that Scotland and France won their matches but it was Ireland and England that were the victors yesterday. We were joined by one of Will’s mates and we headed off to a typical Spanish bar (according to the boys) stopping to grab something to eat on the way.
I don’t drink and haven’t really for nearly two years however when I saw the glass stuffed with limes and mint I decided I needed a mojito in my life. So mojito it was. The bar was packed and I think the doorman was playing “how many clowns will fit in the car”. We enjoyed one drink while rubbing shoulders with many folk in what felt like a sauna. I was happy to get outside for some fresh air.
It was then off to the Plaça Reial for a spot of dancing. Dancing until dawn – well 4am – I am not actually sure when dawn was this morning. I danced the polish off my toenails. Surely a good dance session!!!!
I am now on holidays and have a week off school and am happy to be golfing the next three days. I have enjoyed my volunteer stint however it hasn’t really been great for my spanish. My spanish has improved however my next volunteer stint I will return to construction work like I did in Costa Rica as I prefer working with my hands than trying to get a bunch of teenagers to talk.
Some of them are fantastic and some are painful. Trying to drag conversation out of a few of them is downright impossible. I just send them back to their room and get other students sent out and when I connect with any kids who want to talk and practice their english, I keep them with me even though the teachers prefer a quicker rotation.
I asked two 13 yr olds boys my usual “What would you like to talk about” after our initial catch up and when one responded with “sex” they both sat there giggling for five minutes (as only 13 yr old boys can) and couldn’t say another thing. In the next class I drew a spider on the cast of another boy who had broken his wrist playing football.
Last week the older classes presented their speeches on Australia. It was kind of cool listening to them tell me about my birth country.
Can I call it home when my house in in Canada? I do not think so.
I was impressed with one of the groups who told us about Aboriginals as I might have set them on a different path when they initially said Australia was “discovered” a few hundred years ago.
I love Barcelona. What an amazing city! I love exploring and getting lost down tiny streets and finding new places.
A couple of weeks ago I headed into the city and cooked a lebanese feast for friends and we then had some salsa lessons in their salon. Turns out all you need is a good partner and you can certainly look (and feel) like you know how to salsa.
Next day, I headed out for a run and went off through the farmers fields (this is one of my favourite runs) and on the way back stopped to feed the horses. I was picking fresh grass as the farmer bounced by on the tractor smiling down at me as I waved. I was unsure if he was going to stop and ask me what I was doing on his property but he didn’t mind.
One of the horses was shy but still let me pat her and the other one quite enjoyed the fresh grass and my scratching around the ears. A much better experience than the last time I fed and patted horses on Prince Edward Island when one bit me on the shoulder.
When I arrived home Josep asked if I wanted lunch. Josep advised it was baby horse “like veal but small horse”. I explained to him I had just finished feeding the horses and did not want to have one for my lunch so I cooked the mushrooms I had and made a horse free pasta sauce.
I must admit as horse is not a popular meat in Australia it made me feel a little odd until I recalled the time I ate camel in Morocco and I’m Australian so I love lamb and they too are babies. I don’t eat a lot of meat, maybe once every two weeks as I mostly stick to a vegetable diet.
I have introduced spices into the house and while I know the family will never eat the hot chilli powder (they thought the soup I made that only had pepper in it was too spicy) they do now like turmeric and cumin and smoked paprika. I have to make my roast vegetable couscous again as Josep has requested I do that before I leave.
Last week after walking home from school, approx 2.5kms, I was very tired and had a nap. I felt worse when I woke and then spent the next three days in bed. Sunday and I got up, left the house and went for a short walk in the forest. I sat on a rock in the sun for forty minutes watching model planes fly overhead while I absorbed some needed vitamin D.
I was feeling better and I had golf to play Monday which I didn’t want to cancel.
I played at Golf La Roca with The Sant Jordi Golf Society that I had found online. I was tired and pleased to sit and have a little break at the turn. I shouldn’t have eaten the butifarra which is the Spanish version of a sausage sizzle – bread filled with pork sausage. Instead I should have stuck with the banana and water. I spent the back nine full of pork (which I hadn’t eaten in 18 months before I arrived in Spain) and proceeded to donate balls all over the course and outside the course if we are getting technical.
It is the first time since I started playing golf that I wasn’t a little sad at the 15th knowing the round was soon finishing. I was tired after the 6km walk and was pleased to get home and go to bed early.
I am still not quite 100% but was good enough to dance until dawn this morning.
I didn’t join the family for their Palm Sunday lunch instead opting for a sleep although I did have to get photos of the chocolate plane piloted by minions.
Tomorrow I am playing the 12th best golf course in Spain (according to the Top 100 Golf Courses .co .uk ) Real Club de Golf El Prat, and then Tuesday I return to Club de Golf Llavaneras and Wednesday I experience the golf and food at Golf Peralada.
A week filled with golf. My favourite kind of week.
I am looking forward to being back to playing every other day and can’t believe I am off to Ireland in two weeks for a month of fantastic golf in the UK before teeing it up once again on PEI.
I have already booked to play in my first tournament with Cheryl when I return.
What can I say?
I love golf. I have no idea why and it is very difficult to explain to someone who doesn’t play, in a language I am not fluent in but I gave it a go last night anyway.