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We begin our tour of Italy with Spain.

8 September, 2008 (20:08) | hitch | By: hitch

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Our flight landed in Barcelona early Saturday morning after a brief (long enough to walk from one terminal to the next) layover in Paris. This, after an 8 hour flight that left the previous afternoon EST in Virginia, left us pretty significantly wiped.
“No problem,” we thought, “we didn’t have time for an excursion on Barcelona anyway, we just got the transfer straight to the ship. We’ll head there, crash for a few hours, and then get up and enjoy the afternoon.”
Heh. Best laid plans and all that.
As it turned out our “transfer” generously included a brief tour of the city (and yes, I am being sincere here. They did not have to do that for us) by bus while the ship finished its preparations for it passengers.
The tour left the airport at around 10am (or flight got in around 8:45 am…after grabbing our luggage and going through customs – which consisted of three men disinterestedly watching a flood of people pass by them – we arrived at the transfer point at around 9:30) and proceeded to take use around past one or two points of cultural significance that we were too tired to recall the names of, followed by a trip up the hill to the Olympic stadiums and pavilions.

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We got out there to take a few pictures from a scenic overlook and see the ship, then piled back on and rode through the city itself. They gave us a pretty good (from what I could tell) overview of the city, showed us the area where everyone was shopping and told us how to get to and from there after we got to the ship. Then, it being one o’clock, they took us to our ship and dropped us off. Disappointed that we were too exhausted to go back into town (and further disappointed to find out that we had another hour before our room would be ready) we collapsed in a heap in one of the lounges and took turns napping and guarding our carry-on bags.
We later learned that when a ship gets into port it empties all is passengers out by 9am and takes on supplies for a further 12-day cruise, gets all of its cabins ready, gets everything ready to serve lunch, starts the flurry of activity that we saw when we first arrived on board and is ready to turn around and accept all its new passengers in under four hours. While the idea of living on a cruise ship still holds some romance, the idea of working on one quickly lost its shine.
Here’s the link to all the Barcelona photos

Tomorrow (or sometime soon, anyway), Cannes and Monaco.

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