A Gaudi, Or Three

Yes, this is my third post of the week.  It does help me realize how behind I am getting with these posts.

Sunday was fairly busy.  I started the day by going to see a Gaudi apartment that I had been meaning to check out.  It is called Casa Calvet.  The problem with this building is that people actaully live there (LUCKY!) and therefore you cannot go inside.  You can only admire the façade and move on.  So I did just that.  One of the most interesting parts of the building were the massive and intricate door knockers.

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I moved on to my second tourist goal of the day: Parc Güell.
Have you ever built something up in your mind for many years only to have it more than exceed your expectaions?  Rare, right?
Well that is Parc Güell.
I walked around for hours admiring the contrast between the natural-looking contructions and those of the mosaic style.  At the front of the park are two buildings.  These buildings are a focal point of the park designed with incredible shapes and colors designed into the structures.

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As you walk farther into the park you come upon another focal point, the famous mosaic lizard.  I went to the park on a Sunday afternoon, whcih was not one of my brighter ideas.  The place was packed, and the lizard is the center of the crowd.  People wait in lines to take pictures with the mosaic reptile or just the touch the water that runs out of his fountain mouth.
Keep walking up (the whole park is uphill) and you find yourself at another level of the more nature-esque contruction.  Walk up another level and you arrive at the main level, a wide open space bounded by a wall of curved benches decorated in mosaic.

Around the far side of the park you find not another Gaudi structure, but instead, his house.  For a small ticket fee, you can enter the house, which has been turned into a museum focusing on the history and devlopment of the architect, and his designs. I went inside and learned more about the architect.  He is/was a very interesting man.

After the house-museum, I left Park Güell.  I had been walking for hours and was very tired.  I decided to see one more thing on my way back to my apartment.  I walked back to Plaça de Lesseps, where I had gotten off the metro and wandered through a fair celebrating Castanyers and Castanyeras (street-corner chestnut roasters, typical of this season in Barcelona).  I walked down to Casa Vicens, another Gaudi apartment.  Again, some lucky people live here, so you cannot go inside.  While the building was impressive, I hate to say, I didn´t like it that much.  The colors and patterns were dizzying, and not really in the good way.  It´s all a little overwhelming.  But, it was interesting, and on my quest to see all of the Gaudi structures in Barcelona, it couldn´t be missed.
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Tonight I take the train to Granada.  That post should be up on Sunday.  And if I can get my photo library to function again – you’ll get pictures too.  (Anyone really good at iPhoto, help?)

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