The morning of Friday 13th July 2012 I began this post.
As quite oft I had reached Barcelona through Passeig de Gràcia train station. Usually this way of getting in contact with Barcelona is quite amazing as one of the first things you see is the amazing Casa Batlló by Gaudí.
But this Friday morning it has been quite quite different. I had the feeling I was not in the Barcelona I have known but in a kind of pre civil war Barcelona, 21sth century style.
Passeig de Gràcia with Aragó street was all under construction as they are refurbishing the train station. So it is full of walls and you feel a lot of oppression. You cannot see much but you can hear and hear. And what I could hear was a big protest against the banks. As I passed near Casa Batlló it was full of tourists as usual but unfortunately the atmosphere was not relaxed at all. Next to the Casa Batlló there was the noise and the walls related to the refurbishment of the train station. And to add insult to injury a lot of cars made noises to support the protest against the banks. The beautiful entrance of Barclays Bank was now quite ugly full of papers speaking about robbery and so on. There was even a man with a big vehicle noving his hand to the applause of the supporters. I had the feeling we were in the Barcelona of 1936 with the difference that I could see all in colour and we were dress in a different way.
So the impression of entering Barcelona today has been quite horrible. And I am afraid that tourists may have this awful sensation two. Barcelona is a very beatiful city but when this beauty is surrounded by noise and chaos it is not very welcoming.
Fortunately not all the city was in such a chaotic move so soon I found the Barcelona I knew full of beauty and with a bit of peace.
But I am worried. I am worried that Barcelona internal problems may put away tourism. On the other hand it is obvious too that people have to protest too. I hope we could find a way to protest without harming ourselves.