Barcelona – The Gallery

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Here’s some of my favorite shots I took while I was in Barcelona… I’ll be taking the best ten and editing them to really pop and be worthy of a space on my walls at home (my gallery) and then taking the best shot and painting it on canvas.
Lemme know which your favorites are.. If you guys want prints of any of my paintings or photography.. Please let me know.. If it’s a specific one that isn’t already posted to   society6.com/Storme, my online store front.. I can certainly send it there.  This is something I really want to grow in order to support my travels.  I don’t really want to be remembered for being an Airbnb tycoon.. Or even a travel.. I’m an artist.. Painting, photography, sharing the beauty that’s within our world .. That’s what ignites the fire within me..  So feel to share any of what I post.

I hope you’ve enjoyed it .. If you wanna see the other photography.. Click here and it’ll be a continued ongoing growing list… For videos make sure you connect with me on YouTube .. For unedited in the moment footage.. Add me on snapchat: cre8ivflame and lastly.. For as much experience, in the moment.. The good, bad, and the downright ugly .. Hit me up on Facebook.

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RENT A CAR FOR 6 days.. $27!!! Don’t DO IT!

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Today is day three and I am back at the airport returning my rental car. You know, for a frugal traveler… Renting a car shouldn’t even be an option.. But I totally got sold on the follow up email when I booked my flight to Barcelona.

RENT A CAR FOR 6 days.. $27!!!

And it worked.. I clicked .. And even though I knew better from my experience in Ireland,.. I thought about how much of Ireland I was able to see as a result of having that cute little blue car.. And I justified the extra money I knew would surely come at the desk in insurance and fees… And it did!

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Because I don’t possess that evil little piece of plastic known as a credit card, I had to pay a daily insurance rate .. Fortunately, the guys wife was from Alabama, and when I told him I was writing a frugal travel blog, he gave it to me for the lowest price possible. Unfortunately for Firefly, my advice is.. If you’re coming to Barcelona… DON’T get a car!! Here’s why .. Y’all read about my experience losing the car.. So that’s reason number one. Secondly, there isn’t anywhere to park. I’ve spent more gas, driving around looking for parking, than I have actually getting wherever it is I was trying to go. Third.. Gas is expensive here, as it is in all of Europe .. $6 a gallon at least!!! Parking costs 4 cents per minute.. And walking up and down the hills of Barcelona to get to and from your car, once you’ve found parking.. Honestly.. It’s easier to take public transport. When you get to the airport.. Get a T10 card for 10€ at the airports train station. This will give you ten trips which are all good for an hour and 15 minutes if you need to transfer. Three stops and you are in the city center! If you pay per ride it’s 2.10€ per trip.. So this card is a little money saver in itself. Also.. If there’s more than one of you, you can enter the card.. Let it feed thru and leave it there for your friend behind you. It isn’t one per person.. So if you’re going for a weekend.. This works out great! (By the way, this isn’t cheating, I read it in the tourist transit website)

  The bonus of going back to the airport was the people I met on the train to the city center. While walking across the bridge to the train station, there was an elderly French lady who was struggling to walk, pull her luggage, and hold her robe up off the floor so she wouldn’t trip. I offered to pull her baggage for her, doing my good deed for the day. When we got to the station, her son was waiting for her impatiently.. I’ll keep my thoughts to myself about what a jackass he was! They only spoke French, so I helped them understand that they had to take the train to the city and then get a train from there to Paris. Hopefully they made it. On the platform, a guy heard me speaking English with the conductor and pulled me aside for help figuring out what thy needed to do. They were Turkish Muslims, and very friendly! 🙂

I shared my research about the T10 card.. And given that a single ride from the airport to the city was 4.80€ each, the T10 was already saving money!

“There isn’t any toilet paper…” a true story

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So I’d like to tell you that yesterday was as magical as it sounds.. Fly from Rome to Barcelona to spend the night on a sailboat, watching the sun set, the dinner cooking on the stove, and the breeze blowing in the cool of the night…. but i’d be lying…

I’ll pick up where I left off.. sitting on the train, blogging my “Dear Haters” piece.  I arrived at Termini.. the main train station in Rome, and found the bus stops on the side that have the transfer buses back to the airports.  Well, as my luck would have it yesterday, my bus that I had purchased a round trip ticket for had left ten minutes earlier.. it was now 7:51am and the gate for my flight opened at 9:05am.. I knew it was an hour trip to the airport from the bus ride in, which happened to go past everything I had just commuted thru to get to the terminal (im sure there must’ve been an easier way to do this had I researched it some more)  I took the bus that was there already, paying an additional 4 euros.  Eventually the bus left, and we arrived at the airport, thankfully at the right terminal for 9:10a … I couldn’t seem to find a board anywhere to figure out what gate I needed to head towards.. The airport had 5 different areas with gates.. and I had zero time.. I saw the Vueling check in desk.. first time flying with them, and headed thru security, frantically taking out my clear bag of liquids, removing my boots, and my laptop .. of course when you’re rushing, non of that happens easily .. I hopped thru security.. made it to my gate, practically holding all of the contents from my backpack, just in time to see that my flight was delayed. Exhale!

I bought a bottle of water, and found a spot to start repacking my bag .. this time not for the convenience of the security check, but to consolidate everything so that it was as little as possible, getting as close to the carry on requirements as possible.  I started to notice that everyone elses bags had orange tags on them, indicated they had been passed for carry on… FUCK! Were they going to make me go back to the check in desk with my backpack? what if my bag gets weighed? it’ll never pass… do they allow carry on and a personal bag?  I started panicking a little, which wasn’t helpful, and completely unnecessary when I look back at it now.. I mean worst case scenario, they make me pay 50 euros for my pack to be checked.. but my Barcelona budget was already well over its limit..

All that worrying was for nothing .. I walked right thru, boarded the plane, that incidentally had way more room than RyanAir, and a pocket infront so that I could sit my phone and charger to recharge during the flight, while working on some past blogs.

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Does anyone know what that rainbow circle is on the clouds? Just wondering.

So we landed! 🙂 Two hours after landing and waiting in line with FireFly, I finally had wheels!  I have to say.. renting a car in Barcelona is completely pointless.. but I am now in Day Two and looking back in hindsight… getting ahead of myself.. okay, so we are on the road ! yay! finally… on our way to the boat!!!  I hadn’t left the airport when I saw two hitch hikers thumbing it for a ride.. “ahh sure  why not? i have a car!!!

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Maybe on another trip I won’t be so fortunate, and I’ll need a ride?” I pulled over and let them in.. Two guys from Poland, just landed in Barcelona, and heading to Morocco the next day.. “My kinda people!” i thought…

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and i was right!!! 🙂 You totally thought I was about to tell the story of how they robbed me didn’t you? lol nahh. They were actually really cool.. We were all admiring the palm trees, and the mountains in the distance

 

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Finally I arrived at my boat! 🙂 I was so excited just to get on it, and be in it, and relax…

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Just one problem.. I couldn’t get on it.. Yupp.. trying to get from the dock, over the rail of the boat while it was moving back and forth was scary as fuck! I kept imagining myself falling into the water, and worrying I wouldn’t be able to pull myself back out.  My anxiety kicked in, which totally didn’t help because then my body felt like it wasn’t responding to my thoughts and commands.. ugh it was so embarrassing.  My host was so patient with me, and brought my backpack on board for me.  Twenty minutes later I joined them.  I was starting to have second thoughts about the whole boat thing, but I really wanted to do it.  Once on board, the guy gave me all the info I needed, and left me to it… which was great, until I needed to get back off the boat……….

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It looks closer in this picture than it is.. I think lol .. so another 20-30 minute later, I made it off the boat and headed to town to get some groceries.  Should be easy right??? Noooo .. not today! The nearby area looked like a chinese warehouse district.. huge buildings full of merchandise with a store front.  Past that area I found a town tho.  I followed the big blue P signs for parking, and it led me underground.  I parked, remembered my parking space 1012, and headed out to the street.  I remember thinking to myself that I shouldn’t walk too far, and maybe I should just grab something from the cafe, but no.. i wanted to cook on the boat, and keep it cheap, so i walked and walked, looking for a grocery store.  I saw some women walking up the hill towards me carrying shopping bags, so I figured I was going the right way.  I passed a woman walking down with an empty bag, so I had to be in the right direction! When I got almost to the bottom of the hill, I could see the train tracks, and on the other side was the harbor.. I could’ve just walked here!!!

I purchased some bottles of water, some horchatta, cereal, cheese, eggs, candles, potato chips and milk, and headed back to the car.. straight up the street.. take a right.. one block, take a left.. walk to the square and take the elevator down into the parking garage.. right? Nooooooo… not today!! I never found the square.. I walked around and around for two hours looking for the square that had the elevator and couldn’t find it.  I found another parking lot that was underground, tried my card, but it didn’t allow me, and didn’t have my space number… Shit!! What if there are dozens of underground parking lots???? I’d lost the car… my first night in Spain, and I had lost the fucking car, in some tunnel somewhere.. Maybe I could just walk back to the boat? Maybe the rental company had a tracker? Noo.. it had to be here somewhere.. how big could this town be? I kept walking with my 6 liters of water, milk, potatoes, and every other heavy grocery you can  think of! Ugh, it was no use… I sat on a bench, staring at my phone, trying to think of how I was even going to begin to figure out where my car was.  They billed for parking by the minute.. this was gonna be an expensive tab… so much for my cheap groceries… A woman sat down next to me and spoke a sentence in English to her granddaughter… “YOU SPEAK ENGLISH???” I said.. kinda excited.. “Ahh noo.. my granddaughter, she speak english, i speak little” she said… pointing to her 3 year old granddaughter.. “Great” i thought.. the fate of my finding my car is about to rely on a 3 year old translating my english into Spanish for her grandmother… Well, the little girl was scared of me and didn’t want to talk, so that didn’t work, but I was able to pull my translator app out, and slowly piece together some Spanish to describe where it was that I parked.  Finally the grandmother looked like she’d had an epiphany… She got up and walked me several blocks to a light, and at the corner she said “go this way, not first, no, second light, no, three light, right, go straight and see park”  I thanked her and walked that way.. it was now about 8pm.. dark, colder, my battery was dying.. and low and behold.. The square!!!!!!

I finally found my car, got in and drove back to the boat… Ahhhh… Finally…. the boat.. the fucking boat.. i still had to get on the damn boat, WITH groceries.. Fuck this.. I tied the bags tight and tossed them over.. fifteen minutes later I managed to bounce up and down on the rope like a tight rope, enough for it to tighten so I can hold on for near death, and pull my fat ass over the railing, back onto the boat…. I did it!!! I picked up the groceries.. the milk didn’t make it .. and eggs and potatoes when thrown.. not a great combination.. the butter had busted out at the bottom.. but we had made it!!

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I looked up and saw the moon shining down, almost full and smiled.. I used to fantacise about killing myself on a full moon, shimmering over water.. opera playing in my ears.. and here i was, full moon, on the water.. having the adventure of a lifetime!  I had to pee again… I wasn’t trying to get back off the boat, so I used the tiny little toilet.. and low and behold, no toilet paper .. go figure.. I had TP in my backpack tho.. this wasn’t the first time I had encountered a lack of toilet paper on my travels.. private boat right? I shimmied out the bathroom to my pack laying right outside the door, and KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK .. as he popped his head over the opening.. there I stood, half naked from the waist down.. “There isn’t any toilet paper….” I said.

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Welcome to Spain!

On the up side… I woke up to this this morning…

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