I can’t believe we’ve been here almost a month already! Wow, it is speeding by faster than I even imagined. We don’t even have a well working shower yet—ours is like a combination of getting hit with a fire hose while someone simultaneously spits on you. But other than some upkeep issues, our apartment is ideal, and in the PERFECT location. All part of the experience—especially the shower, which is a true adventure.
Thank God Kate & Lilly have been on top of the blog. I did have good intentions—do have good intentions—but there is so much to do here. I haven’t written and I’ve barely read. When I do have free time I prefer to just set out (hopefully with Kate or the kiddos) in some new direction and discover more of what this amazing city has to offer. And it is so packed full that even the same route reveals new gems on each and every excursion.
I’ve always been someone who relishes the unopened gift on Christmas (I never tried to sneak a peek)—Whatever could be in there?? BCN is like a city of unopened Christmas gifts. Each night… or day… or Thursday… I don’t know, schedules aren’t really a thing… the gates and doors are closed on businesses, often covering their sign and any clues about what’s inside. You walk by some small, closed door without ever questioning what is behind the gate and graffiti art. Then one pass you see it open and discover some amazing cocktail bar or craft beer shop, a giant, multi-level bookstore, a store that sells nothing but rubber ducks, an art gallery, a barreled vermouth bar, a giant bike shop, and of course endless markets, cafes, and restaurants. I literally just saw a hotel across the street from us I hadn’t noticed until yesterday. Seriously.
And that’s just here in our neighborhood.
Speaking of our neighborhood, for those familiar, we are in Central Eixample which is just West of Plaça de Catalunya (away from the water). The Plaça divides four sections of Barcelona: El Raval, The Gòtic Quarter (+ El Born) and Left & Right Eixample—so we are close to all the action! Rambla de Catalunya divides the two sides, so officially we are are on the left, or “Gayxample.” It’s got a ton of energy and a great vibe! Just beyond the quarters are Barceloneta (the beach) and Gracia, La Sagrada Familia & other Gaudi creations and I guess other things too… we have a lot more exploring to do!
One find not too exciting for everyone else, but great for me is the WeWork on Passeig de Gràcia. It has been a quick and easy place to go work rooftop, use a printer, and get away for calls where I need privacy. It is just one block away, in-between a huge FC Barcelona store and a Gaudi building, and open late. The time difference has had a few challenges, but honestly been a pretty easy transition. I LOVE having my mornings free to go for a walk, hang with the family, then start working in the afternoon. We may sneak out occasionally at 10pm for a dinner (totally normal time here), but that’s 4pm back home, so really able to keep US hours for the most part. And for travel it works great because we can take our time Monday morning—or any morning. Have I had a conference call end at midnight? Yes, but totally worth it. Oh, also WeWork has free coffee and beer.
Those of you I work with know I try to work in new places as often as possible… why not!? Here are my daily snapshots of a work location and view on Instagram @FractionalPetsolt
(COVID did make this a bit challenging back in SOP, but I did my best to keep it going)
I have so much more to share, but that’s it for now. Please read the blogs from Kate & Lilly about all the details and much better writing—I will try to do a better job of memorializing my thoughts about this adventure and share some stories too. I promise!