06/11/17 – 12/11/17
It’s Monday and I’m not coping very well. I’ve been at this internship for over 4 months and nothing has changed. During the evenings and at weekends I love exploring the city and making the most of my time here. During the week I’m miserable and I dread going to work every day. I’ve come this far and I’ve exhausted my efforts at making a change, so I just need to keep going. Next week I meet my half way mark. I just need to stay strong. This is the most mentally challenging experience of my life, and I want to be proud of myself at the end and know that I’m strong enough to do anything.
On Tuesday I received a text from the DVLA (driving agency) saying that I was due a tax refund of £48. I didn’t really think about it and assumed it was something to do with putting my car off road at home. Being the naïve money lover that I am, I immediately entered every single detail of my card into the website. It then took me to a page to upload a copy of my ID, which I didn’t have on my phone. Thankfully. On the bus home, I showed Marty the text and his words were ”OMG Rebecca that’s a mobile number did you actually put your details in? Every single detail? Even your card number?” Fortunately the scammers hadn’t acted yet and I had time to move my money and cancel my card. Oopsies.
On a positive note, my mentor has been out of office all week, so I have been working with other members of my team. I get more tasks, therefore the day goes in so much faster and I haven’t had the anxiety or usual bad feelings with coming to work. I’m not sure how long it will last though, as she’s back on Monday. Marty is enjoying his new job, and he now knows more about eyebrow waxes and eyelashes extensions than your average female. My Granny is still in hospital, mouthing off to the doctors as usual. Despite the fact that I talk to my family every day, I still feel so disconnected from everything that goes on and I wish I were there to help out. All I can do is offer my support and try not to think about it all too much.
Our final visitors arrived at the weekend, Marty’s sister Danielle and her fiancé Barry. They arrived on Friday night so we met them in Plaça Catalunya and went for some food at a burger place called Bacao. I’ve heard great things about this place and it’s usually very busy, but it turns out they don’t like to cook their burgers in this city. As a vegetarian, I prefer not to watch the blood dripping out of a burger and onto the plate. Therefore, I ate my mushy green burger with my eyes closed. After the cavemen had finished their burgers, we took a walk through the Gothic Quarter and into Plaça Reial, a square filled with trees, lights and fancy restaurants. Despite complaining for 4 months about the street sellers, Martin decided that he wanted to buy a light-up toy that you fling into the sky. After many unsuccessful attempts and a wasted euro, the toy broke.
On Saturday morning we did our weekly shopping and met up with Danielle and Barry at 1pm. We decided to rent bikes, a very common mode of transport in Barcelona. We cycled along the beach, from Barceloneta to the Olympic Village and then to Parc de la Ciutadella, the main park in Barcelona. We then cycled along the other side of the beach, to the W Hotel, where we stopped to enjoy the spectacular sea views. After 2 hours, we had tired legs and sore bums, and we returned the bikes and headed to Burger King for some lunch. After refueling, we took a walk over to La Rambla, admiring the street performers and slightly overpriced merchandise. We then went our separate ways to get ready, as we had planned to have dinner at Dunne’s Irish Bar. (Again). The bar was packed due to the Rugby match, but we managed to find a table and ordered some cocktails and beer. The food was delicious as usual and we finished just in time for the Ireland vs Denmark match at 8:45pm. We stayed after the match until insert time here because I have no recollection of what time it was and stopped at a supermarket on the way home to grab some snacks and ahem … more alcohol. We finished a great night on the balcony, laughing and making drunk phone calls (sorry Ornagh and Conor) until I subconsciously decided to call it a night and went to bed without telling anyone.
Sunday morning = sick. Marty made me a fry and after one bite I was straight into the bathroom. I’ll never understand why I do this to myself. After a long, impossible shower, I managed to get myself dressed and slap on some makeup in an attempt to face the day ahead. We met up at around 12pm and took the bus to Plaça Catalunya, to get a connecting bus to take us to Tibidabo Mountain. On Saturday night we had drunkenly planned to go to the Tibidabo Theme Park, which was obviously a good idea at the time. We had underestimated the size of the park and the variety of rides and activities. Danielle and I aren’t too fussed on heights, but we managed to get on a rollercoaster with a huge drop and a balcony-type ride that stood 550 meters above sea level! The flips and bumps didn’t do much for our hangovers so we were slightly groggy throughout the day. Despite this, we all had an incredibly fun time and acted like 4 big kids for the day.
We left the park at around 6pm, as it was closing. After a long queue and standing on a packed bus for 30 minutes, we arrived back in Plaça Catalunya and headed home to get ready for dinner. At 8:30pm, we arrived at Il Mercante Di Venezia. (For the 100th time). We had a beautiful meal, courtesy of Barry and Danielle – thanks guys, and went for a walk down to the port area. After having an ice cream at Dino’s, we decided to call it a night as we were all exhausted. We said goodbye to our final visitors of 2017, after a fun, entertaining and slightly interesting weekend. It’s safe to say we all know a lot more about each other after that weekend.