Barcelona, Spain, is my first stop on a four month adventure through Europe, the Middle East and Central Asia. Yahoo! But Barcelona….This delightful city is the center of Spain’s Catalunya region — historic, rich and proudly its own culture. The people here speak Catalan, a spin-off of Spanish, (but yes they also speak Spanish so my crude Spanish is useful but it’s Mexican Spanish so….) For many years, the Catalans have advocated for independence from Spain. This hasn’t been popular with the Spanish government, which last year convicted nine separatist leaders for sedition. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/oct/14/catalan-independence-what-is-the-story-what-happens-next
Madrid is more fun with friends. I spent the weekend exploring the city with Mags, who is from the Toronto area, and Javier, who lives in Malaga on the southern coast of Spain.
Madrid is a good place to start an adventure. Mucho civilized. The central neighborhoods are walkable, clean and historic. The museums and parks are amazing. My hotel is chic and cheap. The food is meat-heavy and carb-focused, but I found a good vegetarian restaurant today and loaded up on green stuff.