Yesterday was quite the lesson in walking. I went downtown with the intention of wandering around La Rambla and seeing la Sinagoga Mayor. I figured I would try the synagogue first, as it required a map to find. I walked around for almost three hours trying to find the synagogue. I asked two people for directions. And I walked in more circles than I can count. My wanderings took me through Plaça de San Jaume, Plaça Reial, Plaça Catalunya, Plaça de Sant Miguel, and more. Eventually, I figured out where I was, and it happened to be about a block from where I started, and there it was. Underground, on a small street, I found la Sinagoga Mayor, one of the older synagogues in Europe. It was a small two room building with stone walls, and glass plates covering the recently unearthed stone floor. The building itself dates back to the 11th century, and is very interesting.
After listening to an explanation of the origins of the synagogue, I went back to try to find one of the (many) plazas I had originally wandered through. I came upon Plaça de Sant Miquel and sat down for lunch. There were two accordion buskers playing Hava Nagila, which was amusingly appropriate. After a refreshing meal of gazpacho and pan con tomate (a crusty bread rubbed with tomatoes and olive oil) I was still too tired to do as I had originally planned and wander La Rambla. So that was all for the day.
Today was day one of my internship. It was nice to have something of a plan for the day after wandering around so much. I took the bus to another side of town, and walked the blocks to my building. Then, I went into the wrong building. Once I got my buildings and floors straightened out, I went inside and was welcomed by Maria, the person with whom I will be interning. She told me about the projects, a possibility for one in Querétaro, Mexico, or in Uruguay, or preparing a course based on a section of Bilbao, Spain. Before the project is set, I have to learn how to use GIS software. That’s what I started today. It was a short day, but I am very excited to learn everything.