Nov 092008

Hello from Barcelona!

We’ve had quite a crazy vacation so far. We arrived in London yesterday (my birthday!!) around 7AM. We spent a few hours in London, then caught the Eurostar high-speed train to Paris. We hung out in Paris for a bit, and then it was time for dinner and drinks on the Elipsos overnight train to Barcelona. We got here this morning around 8AM and have been stuffing ourselves with tapas ever since!

Estrella Damm Cerveza

Estrella Damm Cerveza

So how cool is Barcelona? Bottles of great wine for €7. Delicious tapas dinners for €20. And La Rambla! La Rambla is a main street in the center of Barcelona – during the day, it is full of buskers, street musicians, and those “painted statue” people. We’re staying on La Rambla, right off the old Gothic Quarter (Barri Gòtic). So, tonight, we were walking back from dinner through the twisting alleys of the Barri Gòtic, and I finally saw with my own eyes a facet of the Barcelona nightlife I had only read about: the beer salesmen!

All along La Rambla and the surrounding streets, there are these random guys standing around with sixers of beer, selling them for €1 each! I decided I would engage one of these entrepreneurs in a business transaction with my rudimentary Spanish.

¿Cuando? asked I.

Un euro was the answer.

A handful of change later, I walked away the proud owner of two Estrella Damm beers!

I won’t post a formal review here – hey, I’m on vacation, remember?!? However, this beer is not bad! Maybe I’ve been drinking too much all day, but I think this is a great value for what equates to $1.30! It’s a crisp pilsner, somewhat like Heineken, described on the label as “Cerveza Especial” (special beer) and “La Receta Original” (original recipe). Cold, refreshing, and cheap – just the way to end my first night in Barcelona.

Well, I have another bottle of wine, a glass of champagne, and a couple of beers to drink before bedtime – I love vacation! I’ll try and post more tomorrow – until then, I’ll be dreaming of beer vendors roaming the streets of American cities. Why can’t we be this civilized?

I will leave you with this picture – an exclusive shot by’s infrared cameras of the beer hawking action on La Rambla.

La Rambla beer vendor

La Rambla beer vendor

  2 Responses to “Barcelona and Beer on the Streets”

  1. Make sure you drink from Font de les Canaletes. Also look for some graffiti in the Sagrada Familia that references Josh. Something like “Gem [hearts] Josh”. Barcelone is one of my favorite cities. I wrote when I was in Barcelona. I wrote it in the EasyEverything on Las Ramblas. I ended up getting into my classical kind of trouble, finding the ghetto in Barcelona and all of that deathliness. There was an enormous sculpture of a silver fish at the port, maybe the olympic port? There were these horrible clubs there as well. I was alone in Barcelona the birthday I wrote the dying story. I guess I wrote that story the day after my birthday. Let me know where you are in Europe and maybe I can put you in touch with a local I know.

    A character inspired by you features in a play I wrote on my blog published today.

    I’m trying to get my shit together so that I can make it to Africa by June.

    Have a beautiful trip.

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