Thursday Barcelona


Another “hill” walk, yesterday Gaudi, today the area developed for the Barcelona Olympics in 1992. Similarities with Sydney abound. Just as Homebush Bay a waste dump ( radioactive?) was transformed into a “green” clean Olympic venue, for Sydney, so the same thing occurred in Barcelona. The whole area was on a hilltop 200 m above sea level. The diving pool was set into the side of the mountain so that spectators had the perception that competitors, especially in the 10m dive were almost diving into space from a height of 200m. The main arena was also fascinating. The main venues were open aired.

There are a series of cable cars from beach front to the Montjuic Hill, an older and death defying contraption there being one car going up as the other comes down which did nothing for my acrophobia. A more modern cable car takes one to the very top.

At the Olympic museum I learned that Johnny Weissmuller in 1922 became the first man to break 1 minute for 100m ( perhaps even 110 yds in those days) – using the over-arm crawl stroke.

He later became a movie star, famous in one role only – Playing Tarzan in the 1950 – 60s black and white films. Tarzan the Ape Man, created by Edgar Rice Burroughs, famous for living up a tree with a monkey and a young boy! In the books no women, ( its camels in the desert, apes in the jungle ) in the movies, being American, a woman was involved.

Even though pre-pubertal and pre-physics, I distinctly remember that I was confused, vaguely irritated, as despite the gravity defying swinging from vine to vine, his leather apron thingy NEVER seemed to obey the laws of gravity but rather those of decorum. A sort of tutu tease! In retrospect, my unease, irritation and anxiety were indeed a reflection of my subliminal awareness that the laws of nature were not being obeyed – iin more ways than one!

I went to the Palau de la Musica Catalana and it’s a smallish space and despite its Gaudi like appearance it’s a copy cat! I sat through a jazz type concert for 90 mins! Mr Lacey would have been proud of me.

Again my absolute lack of any sense of direction, had me walking around in circles when the theatre was literally tucked in a narrow street 50 metres away.

So many museums, I need a break so taking a train to Montserrat tomorrow – Saturday