60 Days in Europe: Day 23 / June 21

June 21, 2014 – Carcassone – Figueres – Llanca.

Today Laura returned to Spain after 35 years. The folks in Figueres were nice enough to give her a warm welcome:

From my journal:
Caught bus to station for 10:30 train to Figueres (Spain).

Dali Museum: fabulous. The whole range of his career and work in all media. Brilliant.

The Museum was designed by Dali and he oversaw its construction. This included works done just for the Museum.

I went in by myself. We arranged to afterward meet Jessie, Laura’s childhood friend from her years in Mallorca (1976-79). Jessie is an ex-pat American who  has spent most of her life in Spain.

Met Jessie afterward, at 3:00. She drove us to her home in Llanca, a seaside village. Walked us to our hostel, then we walked to her apartment on the square, right across from the church and the old bell tower. Met Nico (Jessie’s partner) and Dario, their son.

Went to the beach and swam. Back to the hostel then to the apartment for dinner and dessert. We talked a long while about the question of Catalunyan independence. They plan a referendum in November, which the Spanish government has said it will not recognize, and has insisted not take place. As a native Catalan, Nico is conflicted about the question. He understands, and at times shares the sentiments behind independence (I notice how he always refers to Spain as if it were a different country).

Nico talked about his father, a strong anti-Spain, Catalan patriot who endured decades under the Fascist suppression of Catalunyan culture and freedom.

He also has misgivings about the consequences of independence.  I appreciated hearing such a nuanced perspective from someone to whom it is an important but complex issue.

Jessie & Nico put out a beautiful spread of food for both dinner and dessert.

After eating we went on a late night walk to the waterfront.

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