Back for another year of Cruising

After a Sojourn in Barcelona and Germany we are now back on the Freshwater. While in Barcelona the temperatures were quite bearable for our tender Australian constitution (in the low 20th), not so in Germany and on our arrival in France. The thermometer rarely got above 6 degrees!

In Barcelona we shared an Airbnb apartment with our good friend, Jane. The apartment was close to the Gothic Center and the Placa Catalyuna from where we could explore the city by foot, red bus or metro. Walking through the narrow alleys and passages of the Gothic Center reminded of Zafon’s “Shadow of the Wind”. The fantastic architecture of Gaudi was truly inspiring - talk about “thinking outside box”! 

We loved the Casa Batló and the unfinished Sagrada Familia is surely the jewel in the crown of Gaudi’s works!

Far be it for us to only gorge ourselves on art and architecture. From tapas to sweet delights, we had to taste it all!

Into our seven days we also fitted in a flamenco concert in the amazing art nouveau Casa de la Musica and two day trips, one to Figueres to visit the Salvatore Dali Museum recommended by my brother, Thomas. 

Dali’s weird and wonderful art stretched our imagination, only comparable to Dr. Zeuss and Picasso.

On our return trip we took a detour to an old monastery from where we had an excellent view over  the Costa Brava.

The next day we drove up to the abbey of Montserrat. This amazing mountain chain sculptured by wind and rain into columns looking like human faces and elephants heads, harbours a beautiful Basilica with the shrine of the so called “Black Madonna”. Even though a wedding was held in the Basilica while we were visiting people were queuing by the dozens to see the shrine with the madonna, to say their prayers and to touch the globe held in her right hand.

Above the monastery many walking paths lead to the peaks of Montserrat, others to dilapidated hermitages and chapels.

Today, we had the first warm, sunny day here in Toul, which meant scrubbing 6 months old grime and mould off the Freshwater. Just before sunset we were able to raise the Aussie flag as now our boat looks halfway presentable. 

All ready for Jane to come back from her Italian yoga retreat and abandon her "downward dog” poses in the Tuscan sun.

© Austin Robinson 2019