The two of us made it to Barcelona and had a good long nap after our horrific night bus experience.
In the next couple days we saw the Picasso museum, the Sangria Familia cathedral, the Barcelona Cathedral, the Park Guell, and the Casa Batllo. We also walked down La Rambla, which is an awesome shopping street and bought more clothing than will fit in our carry-on bags. Checking a bag is about 30 euros, so we`re just going to layer all of our clothes when we fly!
We were glad to get most of our touristy sight-seeing done in the first few days, because after we met the group of people in our hostel, we didn’t get going quite as early. The Sant Jordi hostel in Barcelona is the best hostel ever. We met so many people, and ended up spending most of the week with seven guys from the UK. We played Ring of Fire with Sangria every night, had kitchen dance parties and usually ventured out to find a club later in the evening. By later in the evening, I mean no earlier than midnight or you`ll find all the bars empty.
We were sure glad we were flying out of Madrid, because everyone we had met in Barcelona was getting grounded by the Ash cloud. We had booked another night bus back to Madrid (before we knew how terrible it was) that left at 11:59pm on Monday night.
Our hostel was awesome enough to let us leave our stuff there and hang out until our bus left. We almost missed our bus, after our luggage got locked in a room with no keys. Everyone at our hostel almost had us convinced to come out and take a bus the next morning, but finally we got our stuff out and made our bus with minutes to spare.
The next day in Madrid we dropped off our bags at our hostel and walked around the center of looking for things to do. We visited a huge cathedral, parliament and hit a small market.
Our plan was to hang out at the hostel, maybe sleep for a couple hours and then wake up around 1 am and catch the metro to the airport for our 6 am flight, since there was no other way to get there after that. We checked our flight and realized there was a big red `CANCELED` across our flight status.
Mild panic was my first feeling.
Liseanne and I started looking up flights. All of the flights out of Madrid over the next 5 days were either cancelled or incredibly expensive. Our airlines website was incredibly unhelpful, but advised we do not come to the airport to sort out our flight problems, which made things difficult.
We looked into buses and trains to the south of France so we could actually find clear airspace, and buses and trains all the way home, but everything was reeally expensive.
We finally found one flight out of Barcelona on Thursday that was reasonably priced. We booked it immediately and realized that we would have to take ANOTHER night bus to Barcelona.
For anyone counting, that is 3 buses x 8 hours = 24 hours on a bus this week.
The up side? They provide a free bottle of water, and WI FI that doesn`t work.
We made it back to the hostel at about 7:30 am on Wednesday morning and they were cool enough to let us crash there for a few hours while we figured stuff out. They found us a couple beds in another one of their hostels close by, so we took them! We went out for lunch and drinks with the UK guys, who were still also stuck in the city, and hung out on a patio for the afternoon.
We made our flight Thursday, both of us wearing multiple layers that would not fit in our bags. (2 Tanks, 2 Tights, 2 Shirts, a scarf and a dress to be exact.)
Love for now,