Sunday, February 27, 2011

Homeless in Barcelona: Part 6

Hello, Readers, and thank you for tuning in to trumptettravels - the true accounts of my 11 year adventure on cruise ships as a crew member aboard Royal Caribbean, Princess Cruises, Carnival Cruises, Costa Cruises, Cunard Line, P&O Cruises, Premier Cruises and the Holland America Line.  I started this blog in 2010 to share my experiences of working on a cruise for those who want to work on a cruise or for those cruise-a-holics that are curious what goes on behind the smiles and professional attitude you see "front of house" on a  ship.  I've got a great reception so far with hits from all around the world.  Thanks for your interest!

Previously I was writing about how I got stranded in Barcelona, how I nearly got mugged by five Moroccans, how I slept in the bushes and it was only my first day!  If you want to start from the beginning, click here: Crew Member Stranded in Europe.

When I last left off I had just narrowly avoided being mugged by 5 sketchy guys from Morocco.  At the last moment some British tourists ended up walking down the deserted street I was on.  I was homeless in the Med with a wad of cash in my pocket but all hotels were completely booked.

Turning onto the heavily populated street of the Ramblas I rethought my attempts to find a hotel.  I had checked everywhere around in the city, tourist kiosks, phone books, cab drivers, anything possible.  No hotels were free.  I went all the way down to the Christopher Columbus statue (point nearest the water) and realized there was one part I had never been.  There is bridge that goes over the water to a place called Maremagnum.  I thought is was an area where I might find some peace and quiet and a hotel bed to sleep in.  I was wrong.

Maremagnum is a whole complex of bars and nightclubs that starts getting busy around 11pm.  As I go tthere and had no place to sleep I hopped from place to place having drinks, chatting up Barcelona's finest and doing a little dancing.  I surprisingly had a blast considering I was by myself.  I could do whatever I wanted and say whatever came to mind and I didn't know a soul there and more than likely wouldn't return.  I guess that's why some people feel so liberated on vacations - no one from the office is there to raise their eyebrows.

Well, the party was coming to a close so I hailed a cab.  I had a few drinks and couldn't walk back to the city. PLUS, I knew there were more than 5 Moroccans there and I had a wad of cash on me from the last contract.

I asked the cab about the closest small city or hotels in the area and he kind of laughed since it was one in the morning. There were no hotels free and other towns were too far.  Well, with nowhere else to go I headed back to the jazz club where I had been treated so well and found a lovely spot to sleep in the bushes.  I hit the small bar next to the jazz club and they were open late for some reason.  I had played there the night before and everyone was happy to see me.  I knew I had to sleep since I had a rough night sleeping in someone's bushes the night before.

I figured the bushed were safe and it was a wealthy area - I just needed to find that apartment building and I would be good for the night, or at least a few hours.  After about 30 minutes it was getting too late.  I didn't think I would ever find the apartment building.  It was finny the night before I just stumbled on it and now I realized how perfect the little ledge was, off the main street.  I had no clue how to find it, even though I knew I was in the right neighborhood.

I gave up.  Exhausted and annoyed, I headed back down towards the city where I hit a very nice wealthy area and found a bench to sit on.  I started to think of what I could do and I closed my eyes.  My head bobbed down and up and I realized this is where I would sleep.  I had my backpack and camera and I didn't know if I would wake up if someone started to rummage through my things.

I took my cash and shoved it down my pants figuring if someone got down there I would know it.  Also, I took my Nikon camera and basically used it as a pillow, keeping it as close as possible. And there, on a metal bench in Barcelona, I fell asleep.  This was my second night in a row sleeping outside.

Alcohol, fatigue, and the semi-conscious state of being woken up created a thick fog that was difficult to navigate through.  I heard something and I knew I should focus, but it didn't mean anything to me. "Que dormis." I heard in a deep man's voice.  "Que dormis aquis?"  I opened up my eyes and saw what I thought was a very beautiful woman.  For some reason it still didn't click to me and I was really trying to figure out what the question was.

As I was looking at this pretty gal again he/she asked the same question, "Que Dormis? Why do you sleep here?" This last one was in English. It was at this point when I realized I was looking at some type of cross dresser or tranny or who knows what.  It was still dark out and had no idea what time it was.

My brilliant observation was confirmed when he/she added, "Why don't you come to my apartment to #$%^."  I don't know if it was the proposition or the lack of sleep or what, but I sat up and just shouted, "NOoooooo," probably a little too loudly and too freaked out.  I guess I was somewhat justified, though.

As he/she strutted her stuff away I jumped up and started walking towrds the town.  I didn't know where to go, but I thought my little refuge of a bench next to a major city was now ruined and not safe.

I headed down the hill to Barcelona and just headed towards the Sagrada Familia (church).  I remember seeing dawn break on the walk down and wondering what the heck I was doing and how long I could keep this up.  I found a solid concrete bench and noticed people starting to open up shops.  The bench was cool when I sat down and felt nice since I was a little warm.  It didn't heat up because the concrete was so thick.  I lay down and fell asleep and didn't wake up until the sun was out and many people were walking about the sidewalks and pathways around the Sagrada Familia.  At this point I was on very little sleep and I realized I wouldn't be able to spend 8 more days like this.  I diefinately could not be woken up by a tranny hooker ever again in my life so I dedicated the entire day to that mission.

I hope you enjoyed the my posts about my stay in Europe in between cruise ship contracts.  I still have more days in the adventure left so "Follow Me" (on the right) and you can click the "SHARE" button on facebook to show your friends, too. As always, this blog is viewer supported. There are far less ads here than on most websites and if one catches your eye feel free to visit my sponsers.  Stayed tuned for Part 7!