David's Diary: Tuesday, February 5, 2002

Preparing To Leave Barcelona

Barcelona Cathedral
Barcelona Cathedral

We are preparing to leave Barcelona and head further south. Today I leave Karalee in charge of school and spend the day doing chores. I am surprised at how big the list is and how many of the items on the list were the same ones that I wrote down seven weeks ago when we arrived in Barcelona.

I leave the boat early in the morning and walk into the center of town. While I have many practical things to do I also want to enjoy my last few hours in Barcelona. Karalee and I have visited the Cathedral in Barcelona, but we have not taken the children, which is something I'll always regret. The church has a beautiful courtyard with a garden and geese that live there year-round. The inside features a high ceiling and many beautiful side chapels. I spend a half-hour enjoying the sights and feelings of this wonderful church and try to figure out why I haven't made a point of bringing the whole family to see it. It probably has something to do with the fact that the boys can really only take one monument a week during our travels. Barcelona just had too many monuments to see.

The rest of the day is spent running from store to store checking things off my list. As is always the case, every errand takes longer than expected. But I get to travel through Barcelona having a last view of the streets and plazas that I've come to know during our stay. I arrive back at the marina just as the sun sets and rush to take a group picture of the friends that we've made during our stay.

The Gang
The Gang (Jack, Kevin, Ben, Allen, Willy, Elan, Maggie, Sally, Dean and Karen)

One of the important parts of our stay in Barcelona has been making new friends. There is a large cruising community that winters in Barcelona, but only a few have children. Over the last seven weeks we have become good friends with the crew from Snowcat and Arbella. Dean and Karen launched their catamaran Snowcat last July just north of Port Vendres where we spent the first ten days of December. They traveled back home to Colorado in the western US for Christmas, but since they have returned ten days ago, we have spent a lot of time together. Willy and Maggie on Arbella happened to be on the same dock as us in the Port Vell marina and their two daughters Elan and Sally have become good friends with Jocelyn, Kevin, and Allen. Last fall, Arbella crossed the Atlantic from the Caribbean. Jocelyn spent time babysitting Elan and Sally and on one occasion the whole group of children. On that night, Dean, Karen, Willy, and Maggie joined Karalee and I on Dragonsinger for an evening when friendship and shared experiences developed a strong relationship among the six of us. Cruising is a special time in anyone's lives and it was nice to be able to share how we felt with other people who are cruising with their children.

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