Sunday, July 12, 2015

Exploring Barcelona and Serendipity

Day 14 - 16
(almost) Alone in Barcelona!

The Fresh conference is about to end, and I am asked, what will I do in the three days before our 41 – member strong soccer team and supporters arrives in Spain.  I answer I will use the time to explore Barcelona on my own.  So begins this conversation many of us will have had in the events industry over the years, as we occasionally try to add time in destinations of interest to us.

“Do you like doing that, spending time on your own in a city?’
“Not as much as I prefer spending time with others exploring, but in this case that was not an option.”

Sp what to do?  The elephant in the room, the idea of exploring a foreign city alone, looms in front of me at the same time daunting and exciting for its possibilities.  The next morning arrives, and breakfast is a little late for many as we had explored the Saint Joan festival until rather late the evening before.  I join a table with a few other participants I have met and we talk about the plans, and most are going home.  Fortunately for me, one other woman had the same intention as me, to explore the city for two days, and we decide to join forces.  Now being experienced planners and travellers we know this could go one of two ways – brilliantly or oh dear, who is this person?  So we agree that should we enjoy the same discoveries we shall stay together and if we choose to separate and explore on our own this too shall be fine.  I am happy to report that not only did I end up with a very organized tour guide and incredible map reader, I have a new friend, with a shared love of architecture, nature and good food at the root of this, and I not only greatly enjoyed Barcelona, I found a certain peace I had not expected for while we walked 28,000 steps inane day, we did it all at a leisurely pace and did not rush from place to place.  

So again, the power of serendipity intervened.

Wellness rating – 5/5 

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