The last week has been full of things going wrong in beautiful cities throughout Spain, France and Italy. We had foundation poured on us in the subway in Barcelona, we couldn't get a train to Milan and ended up stuck in Nice instead, then when we got a train, we missed our transfer and ended up in a small town on the Italian coast for several hours. Good character building stuff. When we left Paris we headed south to the beach and San Sebastián. We feasted on pinchos (tapas) and spent a rainy day at the aquarium with the sharks and star fish. There are so many amazing bars and restaurants it didn't matter so much that the weather was atrocious, I even found a Lord of the Rings themed lolly shop with epic pick and mix. We took a scenic train two days later to Barcelona as we had to unfortunately cut Morocco off our tour. Not such an easy place to get to when you haven't booked in advance. Our hostel in Barcelona had this great system whereby no one was ever there. We arrived late at night and no one answered the door. After ten minutes we were seriously considering sleeping in the street under the orange trees when a lovely Swiss couple crawled out of bed to let us in. Turns out the owner relies on you messaging him when you get there or something. I felt better after every new arrival for the following three days had to be let in by ourselves or one of the other guests. After scrubbing the makeup off our clothes and packs (still have no idea quite how it managed to get on us in the first place) we headed to the waterfront the following day and explored the old quarter. Barcelona is a great city to get lost in and we wandered for several hours stopping only for kebabs (the only thing we can afford right now) and to do a spot of shopping. We got back into proper tourist mode the following day lining up with 1000 others to get into La Sagrada Familia - worth every minute of the wait, and checked out the Olympic Sport Museum - worth the hike. I would like to make a special mention of the "unbeaten" New Zealand All Blacks who according to this temple of sporting records have "never lost a game". The French border police who stopped us the following day were far less respectful and threatened to put us back on a train to Spain when we mentioned the rugby. There was a stop over in Avignon where we got to see the Pope's other house and then Nice where we saw only the train station and the inside of yet another dodgy hostel. Thankfully once we crossed the border into Italy I could communicate slightly better which came in handy when we ended up in the middle of nowhere instead of Milan. Can't wait to eat my body weight in pizza and drink Italian wine.
Rachael and Jeremy