Zhoro woke me up about 5 in the morning. He works as a driver and delivers goods with his microbus to a few shops in different cities about 200 km. from Avignon. His idea was to send me with one of his colleagues till Perpignan and from that point I was supposed to hitch-hike until Spain. That was a really crafty idea, but when we arrived at the warehouse twenty minutes later it turned out that the driver has already been gone and the other one who was going at Montpellier… was gone too. We loaded the cardboard boxes at the microbus and moved on to the alternative plan – he would cast me at one big gas station on the highway to  Marseillaise where there are also cars passing by in the direction Montpellier/Spain. As the dawn broke the traffic got more intense and I started waiting for some volunteer to pick me up. Hour and a half later a Spanish truck stopped, a tough as nails driver came down from it and responded with silence to my question „Are you going to Spain?”

On the other hand, he opened the door of the cold storage at the back of his truck and motioned me with the look on his face to dump the rucksack there. Hurraaah, we are going to Spaiiin!

The driver turned out to be a Romanian and also rather cool. After we cleared the question about who we are and what do we fight for he declared that I’m a nutcase and started asking me about my trip. We carried on the conversation at some insane mixture of English and Spanish with slight additions of Bulgarian and Romanian.

As we were nearing Spain the landscape grew more and more calculous, and trees were getting fewer and more Mediterranean-like. About one and a half in the afternoon we reached Girona where he left me at some road-side place. He asked me to write down his phone number and write him a SMS when I complete my trip and go back to Bulgaria.

Prepared for the hard hitch-hike at Spain, I began waiting with a lifted thumb outside the road. After an hour and half a car suddenly stopped. Just when I decided – oh, what a surprise, the Spanish drivers actually have brakes – it turned out that the car was French – a man and a woman were going to Barcelona for a walk.

As a contrast with the slowly changing landscape during my passage from France to Spain, the populated places and the infrastructure transformed with the speed of light. Suddenly a lot more garbage appeared, more grass outside the road and when we got close to Barcelona the populated places impressed me with… their lack of boundaries. From one village you get straight into the other and the only frontier is usually a round crossing. Although I call them villages they actually have very much urban and above all, new appearance. They are full of the same type of new houses, a result of the vigorous growth of building in the previous several years.

When we reached Barcelona the French left me by La Sagrada Familia – the grand incomplete cathedral of Gaudi. I have always imagined that building to be very impressive and maybe that’s the reason why I remained a little disappointed when I saw it. The old part of it appears very beautiful and contains amazing number of details, but some new extension that look like a paper castle have been glued aside.

Hour and something later Carlos arrived – he was Vesselina’s husband and I would stay at her home. Carlos is a taxi driver and his taxi is the only car in Barcelona with a Bulgarian tabel „taxi” on his roof and that’s why the recognition was easy. Vesselina and Carlos live in a village about 20 km. away from Barcelona. Carlos is Catalunian, but he has learnt a little Bulgarian and while we were trailing behind at the traffic jam he told me that they used to live in the city but he couldn’t bear the noise and the stress and that’s why they moved out in the little village where everything is much more calm. He also liked Bulgaria very much and went there at least few times a year, sometimes even without his wife.

The little village turned out to be from the same urban type – smooth streets and new building, and everywhere around the hills I could see similar „little villages”.

Vesellina has been living in Spain for nine years and right now she works as a logistic person at Mango – a big chain store of clothes. Carlos and her have a 7-years old son Joel who turned out to be a very sweet kid.

The next day Vesselina had to go in the city for a couple of hours, that’s why I went with her to take a look of at least small part of Barcelona. While we were travelling I could get a better idea about the surroundings – ten kilometres around the city everythings is a builded industrial and residential area, wrapped in a tight web of asphalt roads and highways. Certainly not a pleasant view.

This part of Barcelona I had the pleasure of seeing was the Gothic neighbourhood. Old tall buildings in a labyrinth of narrow and dark streets. Little shops, metal shutters painted with graffiti, people greeting each other when they meet. It was definitely very different atmosphere in compare with the previous countries I visited.

I’ve walked on one of the main streets – Rambla, where I’ve been watching how street artists draw cracicatures – something that I have wanted to learn for ages. Later Vesslina explained to me that all the artists and musicians on the streets have permission, gained at competitions and pay taxes in order to practice their professions.

In the evening I enjoyed Bulgarian meat-and-vegetable hash and the next day it was time to go on my way. About lunch time we started the taxi’s engine and Carlos took me to a gas station about 20 km. away from Barcelona and with that started a whole different story.

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