Our Barcelona exchange home for the next two weeks is located in the La Ribera neighborhood which flows into El Born and Barri Gòtic, the oldest of the traditional Barcelona barrios. We are smack in the middle of a whole lot of hustle and bustle!
Come along, entrada!
A neighborhood street with neighborhood shops.
The boss of barri Gòtic used to be Ramon Berlinguer III the Great, Count of Barcelona, Girona, Ausona, Besalú and Cerdanya, Viscount of Rodez.
His first wife María Rodríguez de Vivar was a daughter of El Cid, Spanish [folk] hero and forebearer of the present day king. His second wife was called Almodis, which was also the name of his grandfather’s third wife, the notorious Almodis de la Marche. Gramps Ramon Berenguer and his Almodis married while both were still legally married to their previous, second, spouses. The Pope swiftly excommunicated the illicit couple for a little while. Almodis was a highly learned and powerful woman who maintained political and personal connections with all of her husbands and her [at least] 9 children. Life among the ruling class in the eleventh century was fairly bloody, though. Her son Ramon Berenguer II was killed for the crown of Barcelona by his twin brother and co-ruler Berenguer Ramon II while Almodis herself was murdered by a son of Isabel of Gascony, who was her husband’s first wife. Our Ramon on the horsy, Ramon Berenguer III, son of the assassinated Ramon the second, was also married three times. The marriage to his third wife, Dolça de Gévaudaun added another title, Ramon Berenguer I Count of Provence, making him the most powerful ruler of the region. Below is a partial view of his cozy Barcelona home.
Close to the cathedral in barri Gòtic, you find angels, including fallen ones.
A street level side window of the old Synagogue. Parked in front of it, a lovingly carpet-lined shopping cart.
Satan works right next door to the Synagogue, which Jesus counteracts just two house down the street. A multicultural neighborhood indeed!
To conclude our walk through the gotico quarter, a couple of random snaps, as we ambled down la Rambla, the famed main drag in Barcelona centro dividing the divine barri Gòtic from the infamous barrio el Raval.
Above, a quick glimpse of the Antigua Casa Figueras a tiny corner bakery build in 1820 and decorated in 1902 by painter, set designer & architect Antoni Ros i Güell in the distinct Catalan Modernisme form of Art Nouveau. When it caught my eye from across the street, my first impression was ‘green’, my second ‘biker bar’. Now that I know it’s decorated inside and out, I have to go back and take more detailed pictures – and try their pastries! Below, beneath the floors of the Hostal Bcn Ramblas hotel, you’ll find the Erotic Museum. The Lady in White was promoting interest with a little dance à la Dita von Teese on the balcony.