Thanks to ibuprofena, some yoga (a la Fabio) and a day of rest, I have been liberated from my hip pain. So I continue with a heightened sense of not being made of steel and I have ditched the sense of urgency. Breathing.
It was a perfect day today.
La Pedrera will be my new apartment building. Gaudi has spent all of his imagination and style on this building and I am happy to give up my entire life's work and all the happiness I am owed to take on the lease for one of these apartments.
I will take the dog, of course, and my great friend Markus will join me. He will also bring his dog. I will also take my friends, as there are spare bedrooms. These spare rooms were originally established as the servant's quarters, however this will in no way reflect the hierarchy that operates in the house. (I may, every now and then, request a cup of tea be brought up the 20 flights of stairs to the rooftop).
I'm not sure how we shall live yet, but when the passionate people of Gracia become independent, I'm sure we could find some work helping out with garbage collection or other local services that they haven't thought about managing yet. Gracia is only a few Metro stops away from la Pedrera, so this will be convenient and leave maximum time for apartment dwelling.
Fabio: Hola! Alex! Are you sleeping? ( knock knock knock)
Fabio has made one of his fabulous offers to take me to one of his favourite cafes for a healthy meal. Every time Fabio makes this offer, it seems to also entail a few hours of walking around the streets with commentary, so of course.
...and that's what we do. Beetroot salad, beetroot juice (probably could have ordered more thoughtfully) and then hours of strolling through the Gothic streets of Barcelona. These are Fabio's favourite streets and buildings, despite the tourist invasion in the last decade that has stolen some of the romanticism for him.
Fabio: You won't see the old lady in black sitting in the street anymore.
Aqueducts, gargoyles, churches, roman columns, old city walls, a little cafe and a glass of red wine.
We left America St in the afternoon. We got back at half ten.
I would not see Fabio in the morning because I had to be at the train station very early, so he wrapped presents for me to take home before I went to bed, including a cocoa nut and CDs with some of his favourite movies, music and video clips.
I also bought a painting from his wall. Now I will have something to remind me of the gorgeous Fabio, America St and the incredible city he is so passionate about.
It will also remind me of the enormous number of fabulous friends I have all over the world, but just haven't met yet.
en route San Sebastian.