Barcelona and the surrounding areas can be tricky for parking a motorhome. So, we are staying just outside of Granollers on a secure site until our friends John, Alison and Lee arrive for their holiday.
Once they have settled into their hotel they come and find us with a much-appreciated bag of goodies, books, tea bags and birthday cards.
The hotel where John and Alison are staying is in the opposite direction to us but still on the outskirts of Granollers. The hotel has agreed for us to leave the motorhome there during the day whilst we are out with them. It’s a lovely hotel with views over the Valles region and right next to the Catalunya race circuit.
Over the next few days, there’s lots of sightseeing. We see Jugglers entertaining cars at traffic lights, there’s a sudden downpour of rain that floods certain areas. Lee manages to capture on video water pouring out of elevators. Most of all there’s lots of fun and laughter.
It’s a bank holiday and some of the places in Barcelona are closed so we have a wander around the marina, past the stalls and street sellers.
Just across the road from here, we find a square with restaurants and bars so we decide to try the tapas bar. We order a selection to share, Patatas bravas, Russian salad, tomato bread and tortilla to name just a few, they were delicious.
We have a walk along the beach in search of ice cream but apart from lots of people sunbathing and a few restaurants there’s no ice cream. So we go back to the hotel for a swim before going out to Vienna’s for dinner, one of John Parkers favourite places.
Next morning we head to the market at Granollers. It a traditional market dating back as far as 1060 to the present day. With over 400 stalls, Bags, clothes, shoes, perfume and even fruit and veg stall, all reasonably priced. Alison loves a market so she is in her element.
The boys decide they want to go go-karting which is just on the outskirts of Barcelona. After registering John boy, John and crack (their track names) take their places on the track.
Whilst Alison and I get a drink and find somewhere to sit ready to take photos.
Their 10 minutes goes quick as they weave their way around the track. There’s plenty of competition, and one aggressive driver, who is soon put in his place.
I think all that adrenalin as gone to their heads they decide they want another go but at a different circuit.
The second track is a few days later in the evening, outdoors. They were going to go during the day but after an all you can eat Chinese buffet served by Mr Magoo the boys needed a siesta and a swim before taking their places on the grid.
Once again Alison and I position ourselves ready to take photos. We both agree this track doesn’t seem as safety continuous as the other one. We can see trouble ahead.
With 20 minutes on the track and carrying a little more weight courtesy of Mr Wok, their off. It’s hard to keep track of them at times.
Crack keeps a steady pace whilst the two Johns go head to head, pushing and nudging each other.
To quote Murray Walker,
‘A battle is developing between them, I say developing because it’s not yet on.’
With their time up, their Go karts parked they are full of who comes first, who overtook who, and fastest lap times.
Fortunately, no blood or tears were shed only sweat. I’m sure Kimi Raikkonen, Sebastian Vettel and Jenson Button will all sleep soundly knowing their jobs are safe.
In the evenings we go back to the bar at their hotel. Where we sit and people watch. The police seem to use it as their social club it’s definitely the safest place to be. We think there’s a ’Lady of the night’ that frequents the hotel. And a young barman who doesn’t know how to use his Jigger, when pouring the drinks he asks ”is that enough, do you want more”, No wonder they run out of Tia Maria so quick.
It’s time for John and I to move on. We have loved every minute, so would like to say a HUGE thank you to John, Alison and Lee for spending some of their holiday with us.
As always the Parker / Mckirdy experience is unforgettable