Friday, July 02, 2010

over the hills

Yes, it is an early flight out of Barcelona. The kind where you have to set your alarm at an hour that for some, is a few minutes short of  bedtime.

But the flight does offer a provocative view of a sunrise over the port of Barcelona.


Did I mention that Barcelona is a commercial hub? Catalonia is no sleepy backwater place.

But why am I writing now about Catalonia? Once you fly over the Pyrenees, you are out of there!


Heading north. We are going the long way. To Amsterdam. To Minneapolis. To Chicago. And finally, by bus to Madison. No stopovers this time, no, too much in a hurry to get back.

Thirty seven hours after leaving Barcelona, we are home.

And it is a difficult return. Ed’s cat, Larry, died in the weeks when Ed was away. A neighbor found him. Most likely, he was hit by a car. The cat sitter had warned us that Larry was gone, but Larry often wandered off and then returned. Not this time.

Me, I only have paperwork to wade through. But it is a mountainload.

Did I  say mountainload? What’s the weather like in the Pyrenees at the moment? Is someone running down a hillside in the hope of beating a thundershower? Will there be a meal waiting for them that’ll push away the bad scare and replace it with the mellow joy of being safe, in the company of loved ones? With Cava? Will there be Cava?


In one final effort to create a mellow return, we buy a bottle of Cava for supper tonight. Ed comments – you packed twelve bottles of wine from the Languedoc and Spain (and six jars of spices and two jars of dried mushrooms and three tapinades with anchovies, and one bottle of Banyuls vinegar, if you want to be precise, and yes – this all fit in my carryon, which, of course, had to be sent through and no, nothing got damaged, and yes, you are allowed to lug home all the wine you want so long as it’s for personal use and it doesn’t exceed the weight limit)... So why aren’t you opening one of those??

He must be kidding. Never! There are memories in those bottles! Of climbing down and finding a winery instead of Argeles, of finding a rosé at the local grocer’s that is so good it makes your eyes water, of... oh, well, I'm rambling now...