Monday, 2 September 2013

Barcelona Part 4 and final - The Boqueria Market and Christopher Columbus column .

A visit to la Boqueria Market, alongside  La Ramblas, in Barcelona is a must!  So many colours, and so many smells  that make your mouth water!  It's a crowded place, so amongst the heaving throng, you need to keep your valuables tucked away!

Here are just a few of the stalls of which I took photos.
Fresh fruit and ice cold fruit drinks.

No shortage of fresh fish and plenty of willing buyers!

Sweets and glacé fruit. Yum!

Fresh fruit and vegetables piled high!

Cheeses, hams, salami and dry sausages. Spoilt for choice!

More sweets and glacé fruits

The children were fascinated by this man in a park making large soap bubbles.

 Christopher Columbus monument;  the scaffolding is certainly not on the scale of that at Sagrada Familia church, but the monument was being cleaned!  Good to know that, in these times of severe economic recession, Spain is looking after its national heritage! The column is 60 m (197 ft) tall and was constructed in 1888.  At the top stands a bronze statue of the man himself, supposedly pointing towards the New World!

At the base there are four staircases, each flanked on either side by lions.

The octagonal base has eight bronze panels, each of which depict important scenes in Columbus's first voyage to the Americas.  See two of them above and below. 


An interesting way of getting around Barcelona; rent an electric 'car'!! Never seen these before anywhere else, but Barcelona seems to pride itself on its  eco approach and I think it's a good initiative, as long as there are enough charging points!

This lady human statue must have had excellent balance, as she was standing motionless on the bike saddle; other than the flicker of her eyelids, there seemed to be no movement! We saw her each day we were there - what a hard way to make a living!  The only time I saw her really move was when we had a sudden shower of rain, and then she took cover very quickly.  Guess if she had not sheltered, the yellow may have ended up in a puddle at her feet!

Last but certainly not least, we could not leave Spain without eating the famous paella! Looking at it now, it does bring back the gastronomic memories!


Sorry I am still finding it difficult to find time to catch up with everyone's blogs but I promise I will do so very soon. I am struggling to keep up with all the bottling and freezing of the fruit and vegetables in the garden. How can anyone say that there is nothing to do in retirement!  I have never been so busy, and of course in summer there is so much going on here in France.

59 comments:

  1. So true what you say about returement...the busiest years of your life, or so it seems to me.
    I saw those electric cars coming back through Barcelona by taxi with mother but didn't realise what they were as I didn't see the writing on the side.
    That market looks just wonderful....super photographs!

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    1. Fly I often wonder how I ever had time to go to work! The market was wonderful and although I so enjoyed walking around it we did not buy anything. Keep well, Diane

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  2. That small electric car is a golf cart. They've been used for years here in Southern California and I just wish more people would use them where there is great weather. Barcelona is amazing and I understand why so many english people go there to live. The open air market is fascinating! Hard to believe it is almost the end of summer for you. Time to get ready for fall weather pretty soon, which has its charms too!

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    1. Nadege interesting that it is a golf cart or similar. The market was in fact covered. It seems like summer only started yesterday we had such a long winter... I only hope the winter is shorter this year, it is certainly cooling down here. I lived in Africa for far too long to enjoy cold weather, anything under 20C to me is cold! Keep well Diane

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    2. I am sorry Diane, but I think this is not a golf cart. It looks like the ones we have here but because I checked other blogs, apparently, they are electric cars (without being a golf cart). They are very cute and in a place that is very sunny, they are fun to use. They have a range of 80 km before they need to be recharged.
      I understand about the weather. Here in Southern California, which is probably the same kind of weather as Spain (more like Southern Spain), we freeze when it goes down to the fifties (15 degrees and less). We are spoiled.

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  3. that is my kind of market! my husband loves paella and that looks wonderful!

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    1. Jaz that was an excellent paella, we enjoyed every mouthful :-))) Take care Diane

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  4. Oh that market!
    One of each, please.

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    1. Rick I think it was one of the best markets I have ever been to. I love the covered market in Oxford but this was exceptional. Thanks for the comment Diane

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  5. Lovely photos of the market Diane! You must be so busy with all that bottling and canning at this time of year. Have a good week:)
    ~Anne

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    1. Anne it is hard to keep up with it all, plus normal daily life as well. Maybe I do not manage my time very well!! Wish we had a bigger freezer as it would cut down on time and bottling. Problem is nowhere to put another one if we bought one. Keep well Diane

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  6. What interesting photos. Loved the market, although tend not to need to go to such places as much as we used to, and that lady on the bike! How on earth can she stand still for so long!

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    1. Vera we do not go to markets much now either but on holiday it is a different matter. I do now know how she could stand there like that for hours on end, it must have bee profitable or I guess she would not do it! Take care Diane

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  7. I love this market pictures-a variety of choices, and everything so temptating!

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    1. Ola it is a fab market, I just loved all the colours and the smells even though we didi not buy anything. Have a good day Diane.

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  8. I only have one word for that market Diane -- AMMMMAAAZZZINNNG!! We loved it and has we were staying in an apartment for 10 days it came in very very handy indeed.. and as for Paella , cannot get enough of it , even in Paris I have it from the markets.

    Oh this market beats Oxford market hands down!! Take care and have a good week xoxo Anne

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    1. Anne I have to agree with you as much as I like Oxford market! If we had of been in an apartment I am sure we would have bought everything here. Hope that all is well with you, take care Diane xxoxx

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  9. What a fabulous market Diane. Can you imagine being able to shop there on a daily basis. The choices would be exhaustive. After shopping, I'm sure I would have worked up an appetite for that gorgeous plate of paella.

    Being a human statue is a very difficult way to make a living. There is a man at our beach in Florida, painted all in gold including his motorcycle, that does something similar. He has a jar and when people give him a tip, he breaks from being motionless and honks the horn on the bike as a way to say thank you. I suspect it is also a way for him to take a break.
    Sam

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    1. Sam I cannot imagine staying still for a long period of time. I am a person always on the go so I am sure that I could never manage it! I would be very happy to have that market nearby but I hate to think what it may do to the bathroom scales :-) Keep well Diane

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  10. I've really enjoyed following along on your trip to Barcelona as it has been years since I visited the city. Karen

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    1. Thanks Karen, it is always nice to have old, but good memories stirred up occasionally. I follow a few of the South African blogs for that reason. Take care Diane

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  11. Hi Diane .. love the photos and the storyline - a market to visit most definitely .. the stalls, oh the stalls! Delicious!

    Excellent the garden is giving up its produce ... so pleased to read of husbandry.

    Gorgeous .. I used to love Oxford market many decades ago ... while the Paella looks just too good and it's only teatime!

    Cheers Hilary

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    1. Hilary it is the best market I have ever been to. I could have spent ages there but N is not good being on his feet for too long so we had to cut it short :-(

      I love my garden but how I wish everything would not be ready or ripe at the same time!!

      That paella was excellent. Keep well, Diane

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  12. I always love these posts. The market looks intense and wonderful. Renting the little electric cars is a great idea. We have the human statues here in Portland - they are amazing!

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    1. Pam it really was a wonderful market. I would quite fancy one of those little cars to 'race' about in but they would not carry much shopping! Have a good day. Diane

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  13. Fabulous market shots Diane, shopping at open air markets is so much more fun than supermarkets oui! Happy bottling! Just think how wonderful if will be to have all that delish fruit and veg through the winter months.

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    1. I could not agree more, it beats a supermarket hands down. Wish we had one half as good nearby. I love our street markets here, but they are not quite the same! I hate the cold but I am almost looking forward to winter to reap the delights of summer. Take care, Diane

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  14. That looks a wonderful market. Markets are guaranteed to make me a happy bunny. I know it's more convenient shopping in a supermarket but I've never found a supermarket with the soul of a market.

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    1. Phil you are so right, very little soul in a supermarket. Keep well Diane

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  15. I love the pictures of the markets. Barcelona looks like a wonderful city.

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    1. Dawn Barcelona is a lovely city. Thanks for the comment, Keep well

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  16. Those markets look so wonderful. Sure wish I had choices like that near by. Although the freezing and canning is a lot of work you'll eat so well all winter.

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    1. Gaelyn I would also be happy if we had a market like that. You are right it is a lot of work But I can sit back and enjoy in winter :-) Keep well Diane.

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  17. We went to Barcelona too and saw the “living statue” there. The market is full of so many tempting and delicious items – hard to resist. So far this afternoon I made 32 jars of fig jam so I know what you mean about being busy with fruits and veggies.

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    1. Vagabonde was it the same woman on the bike? What a way to earn a living!! Our figs are not ready yet, but they will be next, then the quinces followed by the medlars! It is hard work keeping up with them all. Take care Diane

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  18. I cannot get over all of those beautiful fruit juices lined up! I would want to try them all :)

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    1. Sara there were just too many to choose from. I agree though they looked fantastic. Keep well Diane

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  19. That is one perfect paella. I am sad to say I never visited the market... silly, right? It looks like I could get lost there easily.

    A great end to a great tour of Barcelona, hope all your canning goes well!

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    1. It was a very tasty paella as well Deana :-) The market was quite amazing, if you should visit again...... Tried to look at your post last night, after 15 minutes I gave up. We have a serious problem with our already slow connection it seems!! Have a good weekend Diane

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  20. These photos make me want to go to Barcelona one day. They are fantastic!

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    1. Denise if you ever get the chance...... I would like to return, sooner rather than later. Have a great weekend. Diane

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  21. just like everyone else who visits your blog, I have only one thought : I want to go to barcelona asap!

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    1. Ha Ha, and I want to return :-) Thanks for the comment, Have a good day Diane

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  22. Wow Diane! The market looks fabulous. Such bounty and so colourful too. Thanks for visiting my blog. I'm sorry you are having such problems with the connection. Hope you are having a wonderful weekend. Here we've been having lots of rain but today was glorious and I sat with an out of town friend on a wonderful balcony overlooking the waterfront.

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    1. Joyful this market was one of the best I have ever seen. I could have spent muxh more time in there but N has a problem with his feet and is no good shuffling in crowds, We have a cloudy day today and had some rain overnight. Connection seems a little better this morning but I have been struggling for weeks now! Take care Diane

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  23. What a colorful post, Diane!
    My internet connection also was quite slow recently and I had a computer problem... hade to relaod Windows and Linx-Ubuntu...
    Back to your trip... That sort of market is a must to me!
    I love the colors and the smells and would easily buy.......... too much!! LOL!
    These live statues have had great success lately, I would be unable to stands still for 5 minutes!!
    Great reportage on this lively city!
    Cheerio!



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    1. Noushka last evening I almost threw the computer out of the window, my red headed temperament flares very quickly!!! That market was unbelievable, probably good that N cannot walk far or I would have blown our budget for the year in there! I am glad that the live statues do well, they certainly deserve to, I think that is a very tough job!! Take care Diane xx

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  24. I just love the fantastic displays you shot on the first part of this post! Hope your internet problems will be solved soon, Diane. It's so frustrating!

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    1. JM thanks for the comment. We are hoping that a friend who is doing research will come up with some good answers re our adsl connection. Not a lot of choice here, and we are a long way from any major town. Fingers crossed it will be resolved sooner rather than later or I will have no hair left! Keep well Diane

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  25. The market looks fabulous and colorful! Love all the photos. Well done!

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    1. Thanks Christine, it was certainly I think the best market I have ever been to. Keep well Diane

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  26. Bonne semaine Diane! Bientôt l'automne et les fruits en conserve, les récoltes rentrées pour l'hiver, vous pourrez enfin profiter de votre retraite
    Merci pour ce voyage très coloré à Barcelone.

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    1. Bonne semaine à vous Lucie aussi. Oui beaucoup de nourriture dans le placard pour l'hiver. :-) Diane

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  27. Thanks for sharing all the great photos. What a wonderful place to visit. And the paella looks fantastic.

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    1. Bill that was a very special paella, we enjoyed every single mouthful. Have a good week Diane

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  28. The Paella makes me hungry. Thanks for these lovely virtual tour.

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    1. Rose that picture of the paella makes me hungry also, it was delicious :-)) Have a good day Diane

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    2. Rose that picture of the paella makes me hungry also, it was delicious :-)) Have a good day Diane

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  29. Diane, I love all your pictures. I love the market pictures especially. Gives me ideas for our market. But nothing could compare to Spain. Now I need a good paella!

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