Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Barcelona, Day One: Dr. Seuss, an Architect?

Day one started out quietly, waking up slowly and savoring the deep sleep that only the truly jet-lagged experience (Anna decided after quiet time with Maddi that her sleep wasn’t quite over, and returned to bed…for a few more hours).

The real day – namely that outside our apartment – started with lunch at a noodle restaurant down the street. We got the European version of a combo meal – mushroom risotto, bottled water, and vanilla yogurt. Yum!
With full and happy bellies, we began the 30-minute walk to meet our roommate and new friend Leigh at her favorite park across the city. This is what we found when we arrived.
Little did we know that this “favorite park” included one of the most famous landmarks of Barcelona: Gaudi’s “La Sagrada Familia.” Jenelle, you tried to prepare us for the awe we would experience…we had NO idea!
(Have you ever seen anything like it?? Dr. Seuss anyone??)
After walking around the cathedral a few times – mouths hanging open and camera at the ready – we found Leigh and made our way to the subway station and on to Arabic church where we would meet the rest of our team! 
When we can forego the metro we choose to do so, as it allows us to experience more of this beautiful city.

Arabic church was an incredible experience to put it very mildly. It began with kisses on each cheek from everyone that we met, as well as warm welcomes and genuine excitement at our being there. This was followed by beautiful worship in Arabic (translated into Spanish and English as well), and testimonies from a few of the ladies on a team from Indiana.

At this point in the service, we joined another new friend and co-worker with the kids outside in the park. We played games, gave piggie-back rides, and reveled in the joy and excitement of these beautiful, multicultural children.

The service ended but the fellowship continued with pastries, Moroccan mint tea, and birthday cake – although the room was so crowded and full of conversation that we’re still not sure whom exactly it was for. This was such a poignant picture of the community of the church to us, as we began to get to know these wonderful people.

After the service, we were invited to join Lee and the team of ladies from Indiana to see the “Singing Fountain”

However, along the way we had to stop for more pictures and exclamations of “Oh my word, we’re in Barcelona, Spain!” It happens at least 10 times a day...
Espanya Square


The incredible Palau Nacionel

Gelato to top off an already perfect night
Even when they’re miles away, we see our friends everywhere. 
Missing you Lola!
Think about you all the time, Kens. Wish you were here.
So true. Made us think of you, Kate
While this cannot capture the surreal light, music, and water-acrobatics performance of the “Singing Fountain”, here are a few of our best attempts of La Font Magica!
Come visit and we’ll take you to see it!

What an incredible first day in Barcelona: sore feet from all the walking, and full hearts knowing that the Lord has a plan for us here.

Adios Amigos!

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