When I was a senior in college, my favorite band of all times played a show nearby. I’d seen the Counting Crows live before, but this show was magical for me and has remained with me ever since as one of those indelible moments of sheer beauty that seem so very perfect, you couldn’t have painted it into your life if you’d even been able to imagine it.

I hold fast to my assertion that Adam Duritz may very well be the most incredible lyricist/poet of our generation. Don’t believe me? Just read through his lyrics. It’s like Beauty, harnessed from thin air and molded into syllables and characters we just might stand a chance at attempting to comprehend. The man is crazygenius.

They ended the show with their then-new song “Holiday in Spain,” on a dark stage pinpointed with candles and lights, and the whole moment was so surreal and transcendent for me that I found myself moved, quite literally, to tears. (Yes, I was “that girl,” crying at the concert. We all have those emo moments, don’t we? Let me believe we do. Thx.)

All this, then, to segue into my most recent Wanderlusting adventure: a holiday in Spain, perhaps inexplicably forshadowed by my obsession with this song. I can’t say I’d ever held Spain high on my list of “must-sees” until I went to Paris last year, and everyone kept telling me I had to see Barcelona. Couple that with the line “Or we could simply pack our bags and catch a plane to Barcelona, ‘cuz this city’s a drag,” and I got the hint:

Spain was calling me. So I went.


It was a little over a month ago now, this whim of a trip, and I’m ashamed it’s taken me this long to write about it. Sometimes the most delicious adventures are the most difficult to put into words, because you’re doomed from the beginning in your futile attempts to convey the magic you experienced with mere dotted  “eyes” and crossed “tees.” You can try, but you can never fully explain to someone what you felt like when you fell into that other life and lost yourself completely.

 In Barcelona, I discovered that Gaudi built me a little nook in Parc Guell. How thoughtful!

Everything was amazing: the weather, the culture, the architecture, the food, the people — I loved it all. I’d been forewarned that I might fall in love with Barcelona, but I actually ended up enjoying my time in Madrid even more so. (Posts about each city to follow.)

So it was Paris in 2010 and Spain in 2011…I think I need to continue this European-trip-a-year thing in 2012! Italy or Greece, anyone?