This is not always possible, but if it is, I recommend it. That said, when I was able to get into my room at 2:00 pm on the day of my arrival, everything else fell into place and the experience has been both professionally rewarding and from a personal and senses point of view mind blowing.
Pictures were shared. It was so nice to get out of the city and breathe the fresh mountain air and be a totally secluded world. For a very full day, we were all exhausted and still a bit jetlagged. All of this in 48 hours or less from our respective arrivals.
As with any educational trip associated with a conference like this, we were always on the move and at each turn, the vistas were amazing. The tour I have been on is called Catalonia is for Foodies and it did not disappoint with the different wine tastings, the olive oil tastings, and the meals. When I get back to the states, I am back to my routine again, but for now, I will truly enjoy myself. The meals are more in the line of tapas, so having the little samples has been wonderful. The second night we stayed in a paradors, and you can feel the history. The dinner that evening with all the shellfish and other local experiences absolutely mind blowing including the razor clams and yes, their version of escargot, yes for those of you do not know, snails. Different from the French version, but nevertheless, escargot. I am a foodie and a former chef, so my appreciation for these tastings and a bit of a show with the liquid nitrogen at the Michelin star restaurant added to the experience.
Yesterday, at least for me, has been the best so far and that included a bike ride around the rice fields and the delta, yes, they were e-bikes, but I pedaled most of it and it felt wonderful, maybe around 6 to 8miles, plus the 3 miles of walking we did and the weather magnificent. In the later afternoon, we took a motorboat out to the mussel farms and a restaurant built right into the middle of them and enjoyed a wonderful seafood meal which was topped by paella which is classic dish of Spain, and each region has their own version. It was a show, as well with each course introduced by music. In the case of the paella, A/C D/C’s “Highway to Hell”. The food and atmosphere and the uniqueness of the experience was amazing. And as if the morning experience and the afternoon experience were not enough, the evening started with a lesson and tasting, yes, tasting or vermouth, and while I am not an aficionado of vermouth and my knowledge, even less, it was an amazing history and lesson and tasting of vermouth. Sorry Martini and Rossi, but then I am not a martini drinker and the gentleman who shared his passion and knowledge shared personal experiences. He is a sommelier and foodie, for sure and had ancestry from Croatia, but was a Swede, so a very eclectic mix and a sense of humor to boot. We ended the day with another wonderful meal, and I settled in to finish my schoolwork and time with Rosa via WhatsApp, and yes, in three days’ time, she will be in Barcelona with me. Stay tuned for this week’s musings and the reunion, of which I am beyond excited, enjoy the pictures and videos I share of my time here in Catalonia.
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Weathering the Storm with the Wandering Puffin