Wednesday, October 26, 2016

I eat therefore I am

Another gourmet meal, this time in the restaurant of MNAC.  The restaurant has crafted two art themed meals and I have now eaten both of them.  At different times I hasten to add, and both were delicious.
            The food is augmented by sitting (as we were) with the best positions to appreciate the best non-view in the world.  This is the vista from the vast windows of the museum restaurant.  It is a view that has all visitors reaching for their selfie sticks, but it is one that is woefully inadequate in my view.  So to speak.
            As you eat your meal you can look down the pavilion studded way towards Plaza España and beyond to . . . not very much.  When you take out the bullring and the brick edifice of La Caixa’s gallery you are left with the sprawling effusion of uninspired modern architecture oozing its way up into the unimpressive hills that surround the city.  The landmark of the ugly church of Tibidabo reaches its squat Gothic towers into the sky and that’s it.  If the building of MNAC had been rotated a further 90 degrees, then the restaurant would have had a view of the much more interesting Sagrada Familla and the sea.  Alas, it was not so rotated and we have to make do with the best non-view in the world.
            It spite of my slighting comments, it is impressive – if only because so many other people spend all their time photographing it.  At least in the restaurant one is above the clicking masses and one’s view is uninterrupted!
For the third time, visitor(s) have been dragooned into viewing ‘my painting’ by Lluis Dalmau and, as I expound on its virtues to a cowed audience, I must admit that the thing is growing on me.  I now firmly find myself in the camp that celebrates this painting as one of the stars of the Catalan collection and not as some sort of pastiche of half-remembered Van Eyck – though I do know that there is a case to be made for the latter view!
            We went through three parts of the museum and perhaps did too much, as was made clear when the ‘reviving’ cup of coffee that we had on the outside terrace did not have quite the stimulating effect that we were expecting.

Although it is only one day after my birthday, I am eagerly awaiting the significant letter from Newcastle that will give me the option to rake in my past pension.  This foison cannot come soon enough as it is spent and more than spent – at least in my imagination.  Time is ploughing on and the longer we wait to book a decent hotel in Gran Canaria for Christmas the more difficult it will be.  However, the weather at present is a factor that will give a certain impetus to our cogitations.  The ground is damp from past rain and the sun struggles to get through cloud.  This is not Britain, so we do actually get some sun.  It is an odd day indeed when the sun refuses to show itself in Catalonia – if only for a brief moment in the twenty-four hours!  Brief it might well be, but it does happen and it restores one’s faith.  In something.

After a woefully short visit, Emma is returning to Cardiff.  We seems to have done little more than eat, though to be fair to the both of us we have varied the location of our gustation: Castelldefels, Barcelona and Sitges – and we have not neglected culture.  The only thing missing was uninterrupted sunshine, though Emma made a spirited defence for seeing the City of Barcelona in cloud covered gloom as giving a different perspective from the blight, glinting sunshine defined outlines that one is used to.  I’m not convinced.

This afternoon a scheduled doctor’s appointment to hear the results of the latest blood tests.  As the last one was so satisfactory, I hope that this one is in the same area of success.

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