Day 2 Saturday 17th September 2022
After a good nights sleep (we really
find those Premier Inn beds comfy), we go to the terminal to drop
our bags at Easyjet bag drop as wed already done online
check in. However we find out it will only open for our flight 3
hours before and our flight doesnt actually leave until
4.10pm. Rather than having a coffee in such a crowded area we
decide to go to the Sofitel with a view to having some early
lunch. The Brasserie is open but very quiet. We sit down and get
a menu but its not buzzing and there arent many staff
or customers around so were concerned that the food might
take too long so head back to check in. In the end get a Costa
coffee and a cake but theres nowhere to sit so it's not
ideal. With over 3 hours to flight departure we decide to chance
it and join the queue to check in and all goes smoothly and we
are actually through relatively quickly. So up to departures and
through security, browse Duty Free and although there are some
good deals we dont buy anything. Go to Juniper and Company
and enjoy a glass of wine each, Kev has a charcuterie and I have
a kale, chicken Caesar salad which is nice and relaxing. [Kev - your salad was
relaxing?.] We also have a glass of delicious English
sparkling wine to toast the start of this wonderful adventure.
We decide to go to a different bar for another drink before the gate opened, but everywhere was incredibly busy. We had booked the O2 lounge for the afternoon between 2pm and 3 pm as there was a free deal on the O2 app, so we decide to try that, but unfortunately as we arrived it was closing for the afternoon. We had no choice then but to head to the gate and eventually got onboard but took off late at 5.40pm as the luggage was very late being loaded.
It was an uneventful flight and we just watched films wed downloaded on our phones. Thankfully once we landed the bags were immediately offloaded. We get through the airport quickly and then follow the signs to the metro. Kev had planned the easiest way to the hotel but unfortunately getting to the metro station in Barcelona airport wasnt as straightforward as wed hoped. [Kev - Easyjet use terminal 2 and that seems to be the problem. It's quite a walk to the metro station. I would advise using the bus which goes to a couple of locations in the centre of Barcelona and getting the metro from there if required.]
Once there we get the ticket we think we need to get all the way to the hotel but as we changed at some point to a different line we need another ticket for the last stop. Rest assured by the end of our time in Barcelona we got the hang of how to avoid having multiple tickets. [Kev - it's easy to get confused between rail networks in the city. As well as the metro there is the Renfe which is an overground train that confusingly partly runs on the underground network. A metro ticket doesn't cover you for the Renfe and vice versa, hence our confusion and mutiple ticket purchasing.]
We eventually get to Hotel Serhs Del Port and rush to drop our luggage as wed booked a table at Amades Restaurant for 10pm but were running late. Id been messaging them on our eventful metro journey and they were very good at saying theyd hold the reservation but that they did shut the kitchen at 10.50pm. So we ran to the restaurant and arrived hot and sweaty at 10.40pm. The staff were great and took our order straight away and we were very grateful for the two ice cold draft local beers which helped cool us down. This certainly wasnt how we envisaged the start of our holiday to be, it was really quite stressful, but the delay in leaving Gatwick and the struggle with our luggage and tickets on the Metro just made everything late.
We choose a selection of tapas dishes not your standard tapas however, meatballs with a delicious gravy and mash, pulled pork bun and potato bravas, which we shared. The stand out items were the meatballs and the ice cold beer which we had to have another glass of after the meal so we could truly relax before leaving. The final bill was 40 including tip.
We leave the restaurant and walk to the Cathedral, its lit up but unfortunately is undergoing some renovation so theres a big area that is covered in scaffolding with an advertising wrap on it which somewhat detracts from the sight. By now were fully on Spanish time and think a nice glass of Sangria would finish the night nicely but most places are shut or shutting up apart from a disco near our hotel, which we really dont fancy. So decide to give it a miss and head to bed.
[Kev - you may have noticed a distinct lack of photos in the report so far. Again this is something I blame Tam for. She made a bad start to the holiday. I even had to admonish her for falling behind as we made our way through the metro network! She only had to deal with our suitcases and hand luggage as I bravely led the way forward with the occasional encouragement of 'For goodness sake keep up woman'. Anyway, fear not, we will make up the photo quotient in the next instalment.]
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