In the square a white-haired man approached and said can you believe it? They mugged me, in the metro, there were three guys and they take my wallet, passport, cards, it was as easy as a cake, where is the police station?
I didn't know, neither did the woman next to me. The man said never again will I keep things in my trouser pockets. I said but that's where I always keep mine. I was just about to introduce him to my dutch police jacket, which has two inside pockets, a biro holster and cuffs of variable circumference, and suggest maybe he get one himself, they don't ruin your life, but two policemen walked past and he went to get their attention.
It was my first night. The woman turned my way and said crazy times, huh, and I said slightly, and we talked about pockets, it didn't last very long.
There was an alarming lack of sock vendors. I had been down to my last pair for a while and my feet reeked like a cheese factory massacre. I didn't tell the woman this, but after a short silence asked her where you go to buy socks, and she said you wait until morning, is it an emergency?
Barcelona has a lot of buildings with good bits. That's a good bit, I kept saying to myself, I'm glad they built that. I walked. When my feet hurt I took the train. The next night I put on new socks and took them to the bar. To see how they would hold up. Black furniture and yellow walls and the chandeliers were tiny bottles of whiskey, vodka and amaretto. Outside a man in a green jacket was dodging bullets and wrestling bears. The barman played the stool. The best stool playing I have ever heard, loud and insistent.
Next day the modern art museum. I was excited. I paid and entered and went straight to the toilet. It featured two urinals, one cubicle and about ten six year old boys. One had installed himself in the sink, lying down, mouth under the tap, which was running, he was very happy. They all looked at me and one of them said hola and I left.
The ground floor gallery could be heard from miles off, there was a moaning whooshing insects-slowed-down sound installation endurance test scenario situation occurring. Like most good things it made me feel a bit sick. On the walls was a lot of jiggery pokery to look at. Some of it moved. Some of it was by John Cage.
On the second floor was a retrospective of some bloke. He'd produced many tiny things and a few big ones and here they all were in order. Some of the big things were made up of the tiny things, it looked like chinese but up close it was little people.
The third floor was Are You Ready For TV? I went back to the ground floor and the whooshing noise. It was all over the place.
Then Nasty Mondays, oh it's massive, you must, the whole world is there, said a swedish girl, so I did, and it wasn't nasty at all, it was downright fucking pleasant, which was very distressing.
Back at the black and yellow bar. It was playing circus funk. Another swedish girl, wearing a red shawl and her eyebrows went up a lot, she said it's a good town for shoes, and we talked about Stephen King and grandmothers.