Saturday, March 31, 2012

Lange Nacht Der Museen

I know that I've written about probably 500,000 different festivals and events that take place in Barcelona. It seemed that pretty much every weekend there was something somewhere in the city. Some of the memorable ones that I got to attend while there include the Diada Sant Jordi, La Merced, the 48 Hour Open House, a bunch of events around Christmas and Three Kings, the Diada de Sant Antoni, and of course Carnival, not to mention all the other smaller ones that I never wrote about. You're probably getting sick of hearing about them but I love 'em.

When we moved to Stuttgart, I was really afraid that there'd be zero to do as it's a pretty small city and not a very touristy one at that. Because of this, I was extra excited when I started seeing signs for this year's Stuttgart Lange Nacht Der Museen (Long Museum Night).

The Lange Nacht is a one-evening event where almost every museum, gallery, education center, and, well, almost any place that offers something for people to see or learn is open from 7pm Saturday night until 2am Sunday morning. They charge something like 20 euros or so, which includes entry to the ~90 different places as well as all transportation throughout the city. Like the 48 Hour Open House in Barcelona, there were just too many things to see in too short of time so we concentrated our efforts on things that were not the famous, large museums like Porsche or Mercedes but rather on some of the more obscure things that were a bit out of the way. Oh, and the he night was extra special for Diana and I because it was our first time out on the town with our new roommate Berat!

Our first stop of the evening, after a quick traditional German meal(!), was at the Wasserkraftwerk (Water Works) building located on the Necar river, which runs through the center of the city. Here, they use the power of the flowing river to make electricity with two large turbines. It wasn't much of a "museum" but it gives you an idea of the things you could choose from. I think the best thing about the wasserkraftwerk was that it's a functioning facility complete with tools, inventory, work instructions hung on the walls, and lots of other things that a manufacturing guy like me could get into.

From there we went to visit a handful of small galleries right in the center of the city. We hit about five different ones in a little less than an hour. The art was a mixed bag but a couple of the galleries had wine flowing, which always makes the art so much better. I think this photo sums up the whole micro-gallery thing for me. You've got the questionable, naked-chick art displayed "haphazardly" on the floor but you get to check it out while sipping a white wine. Gotta' love it!

As with the wasserkraftwerk, some of the other things we visited that night were not trad museums. The next stop was at the Haus Des Waldes, which is a center dedicated to teaching kids the wonders of wood. It's located on one of the hills surrounding the center of Stuttgart (which is in a valley) near the famous television tower. The institute wasn't overly interesting as it's really meant for kids...

...but outside the building, in the nearby forest, they had set up a reenactment of Snow White, which is a big tradition here in Germany. In the story of Snow White if you don't remember, she's approached by the disguised queen who offers her a poisoned apple, which she then takes and eats. The apple makes Snow White fall into a deep sleep and, well, you'll need to read the story.

Anyway, Diana was of course chosen by the creepy costumed woman playing the queen to be her Snow White. I say of course because, not only is the woman speaking in German, she's speaking in that creepy "haunted house" style voice. Oh, and Diana's probably more like Snow Brown. :-) Here, she's accepting and then EATING the apple!!! That crazy chick'll eat anything! Even fruit from strange women in the forests of Germany!

While Diana settled in for her LOOOOOOOOOOOOONG nap, Berat (that's him in the photo) and I went over to see what this little cart was about:

Wait! What? There's (1) an old dude with a long beard (2) selling wine (3) made from honey (4) from a golf cart (5) in the middle of the forest! Cool! It's called Met (pronounced like "meat") and they serve it either hot or cold. I chose to have mine hot and it was wow. The guy and his wife have a bee farm and make their own honey products.(It turns out that one of Berat's friends has a bee farm and makes Met. I think I feel a story coming on!) The funniest thing about the stand was that he charged you a 1 euro deposit on the glass, which he returned when you gave him back the glass. Like, where am I going to run off to?

We headed back down the hill towards the center of the city and hit a couple of other galleries that aren't worth mentioning. After hightailing it out of there, we went to an area not far from the main train station where old train cars are stored. The Waggons, as it's called, is sort of an artist-collective-meets-high-tech squatters living and working in old train cars.

Several of the cars were turned into galleries or other activities for the evening. They even had one car that was a demonstration of circuit bending, which my friend Dave is very into. This was one of the gallery cars:

The area around the Waggons was something out of some crappy, post-apocalyptic movie set complete with industrial "stuff" all around, old train buildings, and what's left of some old factories and even what looked like an old grainery. We stayed there for about 45 minutes or so but it was getting late so we went back to the center of town to catch the bus home. We arrived at about 145am so we quickly visited the only traditional museum of the evening, the Kunstmuseum. I took this picture of the castle from the top floor of the museum. It's not a very good picture but I'm posting it to show the giant mini skateboard ramp (yes, "giant" meaning very large and "mini" meaning the type of the ramp) that they have set up.

At 2pm we got into one of the buses that took us back home. It was a fun evening filled with unusual sights and experiences. Thanks to Berat for being a great guide, guy, and roommate! One day, you will be added to our own Mount-Rushmore-style tribute to our fantabulous roommates. Oh, and when's the next special event in Stuttgart?

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Be Careful What You Ask For

I've been taking German classes for just over a week now and am really enjoying it. It's a tough course but it's sooooo much easier than when I learned Japanese in Spanish and Catalan! But anyway, I've been building up my speaking confidence here and there but something happened today to make sure that I stay humble. Believe it or not, this same exact thing happened when I first moved to Mexico many, many years ago...

Back before the days of whereisdarrennow, I still did a fair amount of travel including living just short of two years in Mexico for work. When I first moved down to Merida in southern Mexico, I had no practical knowledge of Spanish but my job required me to interact starting on day one with employees who only spoke Spanish. Fortunately, I was with a small team that was assigned to the project and at least some of the group spoke the language. Let's put it this way, the project would have never been a success if they weren't there...

Even back then I was interested in learning about the culture and language and tried as much as I could to learn the Spanish. Over the two years I ended up learning a lot, which enabled me to later move to Barcelona with only a few hiccups. But, I remember one night during my first week in Mexico in particular when the group went out to dinner. I always liked horchata, which is a rice-based drink popular in Mexico, so I asked my one of my coworkers how to request an horchata. He told me "me gustaria una horchata, por favor" (I would like an horchata, please) so I repeated to the waiter what I had heard.

About five minutes later, the waiter comes back to the table with drinks for everyone and what looks like a bowl of bean soup for me. Everyone in our group laughed out loud because they knew what I had asked for but what I ended up getting was something called arrachera, which, by the way, was really good. I can understand how horchata and arrachera can be confused -- it makes some sense. Afterwards, my friends were nice enough to order an horchata for me and life went on in Mexico.

Flash forward to today some 15 years later and, during my break from class, I'm in a restaurant in Stuttgart, Germany, trying to buy a sandwich and a pretzel to take back to class with me. My German is probably equally as good as my Spanish was back then but I was on my own and had to try so I said to the woman "eine sandwich und eine bretzel, bitte" (a sandwich and a pretzel, please). I was pointing to the sandwich that I wanted, which, in retrospect, I'm guessing helped me to get the right one. She then proceeds to turn around (I was getting my money ready at this point so I didn't notice) and started making an espresso, which she then handed me. Obviously my German is nowhere near good enough to resolve this one so I took my sandwich and espresso, paid the bill, and headed back to school. Unlike the time in Mexico, I'm not sure I'll ever understand how I messed up "bretzel" enough to get an espresso.

So, what have we learned? First, some mistakes end up being very yummy and good while others leave you with a bitter taste in your mouth. Second, be careful what you ask for. You might just get it!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Springtime For Darren In Germany

I grew up in Philadelphia, moved to southern California a half-lifetime ago, and since have lived in Japan, Colombia, and Spain. One of the great things about San Diego is that the weather's amazing. Compared to most of the rest of the world, it's summer all year long. The downside is that the change of seasons, yes there's a change of seasons there, is subtle. Barcelona, with its Mediterranean climate and almost-exclusively urban terrain, has few dramatic signs of spring. Unfortunately, I didn't get to experience spring in Japan or Colombia but I know that Japan is legendary for its cherry blossoms, which I'd love to see one day. It wasn't until the recent move to Stuttgart that I've had a real opportunity to experience a "real" springtime since I lived in Philadelphia.

In true springtime fashion, during the first three weeks here, it has snowed twice (with no accumulation) and rained a couple of times. The rest of the days have been roughly split between cloudy and sunny with temps that have ranged from right around freezing to nice, warm, "spring-like" days. Over the past week or so I've really started to notice spring literally popping up all around like this magnolia tree in the Schlossplatz in central Stuttgart:

...and these wildflowers in a central Vaihingen park:

...and these on some small trees near the Österfeld S-Bahn stop:

I love how random flowers pop up in the middle of peoples' lawns. These flowers are everywhere and I'm starting to wonder if they're some sort of weed or something...

And a more traditional spring mix:

This bright-red bush with the small yellow flowers reminds me a bit of the red trunks of the manzanita trees that grow in the hills of eastern San Diego county:

Ahhhhh, springtime! It's lovely. I hope you enjoyed a slice of spring from Germany! Oh...and probably only my dad will get the title of this post...

Sunday, March 25, 2012


In my first post about coming to Stuttgart, I mentioned about how much of the city was destroyed during the second world war but that's not the case with some of the smaller, nearby towns. Diana and I went to visit Esslingen, which is about 20 minutes via train south of the center of Stuttgart, to check out one of the best preserved areas in this part of Germany.

A large part of Esslingen, including its medieval-era core, was spared because it was occupied by allied forces during the war:

The town is much more the how I had pictured Germany before actually coming here -- it's full of the "classic" (or maybe stereotypical?) half-timbered buildings and scenery. This is the Marktplatz (Market Square) in the center of town that shows some of that architecture:

On the opposite side of the Marktplatz is the very cool looking Altes Rathaus, or Old Town Hall (note the lovely MINI parked out front):

Esslingen, also located on the Neckar river, is older than Stuttgart having documented history back to at least the 8th century. Most of what's here, though, dates from the middle ages and on. In this photo, you can see an old half-timbered building, which used to house the wine presses of the local hospital (I want to work at a hospital like that!), in the mid-ground and part of the city's old fortification wall above:

You can walk along part of the old wall and go up to see the Esslingen Berg (castle). To get there, you need to climb up the hill via a couple of hundred stairs. It's a little tough but the views make it worthwhile. In this photo, you can see some of the town's vineyards in the foreground, the Stadtkirche (city church) with its unusual mismatched towers, and the surrounding valley:

One of the more unexpected things that we came across was that some of the buildings in the town are built over parts of the local waterways. Residents have named the area Klein Venedig, or Little Venice, for its similarity to how Venice Italy (or for that matter, Venice Beach, California) looks. To the right of what you can see in the photo below, there are working water wheels that are generating power. The small building that houses the wheels has a digital indicator that shows how much power is being generated.

Esslingen used to be one of the centers of wine making here in Baden Würtenburg. Since we were there on a Sunday, not a lot was open but the town is definitely on my list of places to visit (again) to learn about and experience the local wine-making traditions. As Arnie said, I'll be back...

Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Trilingual Sandwich?

I've been pretty lucky. I've managed to travel pretty much all over the world and have seen some truly amazing things (like thisthis, and this for example), had a bunch of amazing experiences (like this and this), and managed to learn a lot (like this and this). Yeah, those are a bunch of impressive and memorable things for sure. This post isn't about any of that.

There are certain things you see almost anywhere in the world you go. Places like Apple stores, Dunkin Donuts (except in California), Starbucks, McDonalds, and lots of others. Some say that it ruins the experience and "the purity" of the place. That somehow the place has been "diseased" by the invasion of these "foreign" bodies. I especially hear this from people from the "first world" who travel to "get away from it all" and find that their Grande Frapachino beat them there. For me, these things don't ruin the place. I just see it as the world gets a little smaller every day and that people all over the world enjoy similar things.

I did laugh recently though at just how small the world has gotten. About a week ago I walked by this Subway sign here in Germany and didn't pay it much attention at first--Subways are one of those things that you'll have a hard time getting away from when traveling:

It wasn't until I was just about to turn the corner when I noticed this:

Yep. This sandwich requires you to use three languages at the same time when ordering. Das Chicken Fajita! You can try to run and hide but the world is a very small place and it's getting smaller all the time...

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Gottlieb Daimler Memorial

I mentioned in my last post about how Stuttgart is a car town. Mercedes and Porsche were both founded here and still have their headquarters in the city. What I didn't know was how Stuttgart was key in the development of a lot of different types of motor vehicles and their component parts. One day last week I went to visit the original workshop where Gottlieb Daimler and his buddy Wilhelm Maybach developed the first "universal" vehicle motor. These two would later go on to create the company that would later form part of what is now known as Daimler Benz (Mercedes).

The workshop was a garden shed and green house before Daimler and Maybach got a hold of it. Daimler had originally bought the estate and his future workshop because of its proximity to the famous baths in Bad Cannstatt, which he liked to visit to help relieve medical problems he experienced. When I first walked up to the small building, it reminded me of how HP (Hewlett Packard) similarly got its start in a two-car garage in California's Silicon Valley.

Daimler and Maybach developed their first four-stroke, high-speed motor at the shop in 1883. It ran an amazing (for the time) 600 rpm and produced about 1/4 horsepower. Their next generation of motor produced twice the horsepower (1/2hp -- still less than your gas-powered lawnmower) and became known as "the grandfather clock" because of its "upright" and compact design. With this new design, the pair had achieved their goal of creating an engine that was small and portable enough that it could be used in a variety of vehicles... the world's first gas-engine motorcycle, which they built in 1885 with a version of the motor above:

They later adapted the motor for use in other vehicles like the first gas-engine motorboat in 1886:

...and the world's first self-powered airship in 1888:

The shed and tour don't really seem like much until you realize that the motor Daimler and Maybach designed and developed here is a key part of the foundation on which today's (modern) engines are based.

It's interesting to me how different cities have different types of things to visit. While in Barcelona, it's really about the architecture while here in this part of Germany, it's all about motor vehicles and their history. I liked visiting the workshop. There was a very nice tour guide, all the information was presented in both English and German, and, best of all, it was free!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Meilenwerk - Exotic Car Lover's Dream

Stuttgart may be one of the best known German cities, but more so if you happen to be a "car person". Both Mercedes Benz (Daimler) and Porsche are headquartered here and some of their factories can be found in the area. Needless to say, the town is a car town and has a rich automobile history. I'm guessing that it's similar to the feeling that exists in the Detroit area. Well, about 30 minutes southwest of Stuttgart, in the town of Böblingen, is an old airfield hanger and terminal building that's been converted into a car lover's dream space called Meilenwerk:

The airfield was first developed and put into use in the 1910s. It was used through World War II and then turned into and used as an American facility after the war until fairly recently. The old airfield is currently being developed and you can see a massive Mercedes factory from the Meilenwerk property, which also serves as a reminder of car-centeredness of the area.

Meilenwerk opened in 2009 and is a sprawling facility that houses a car-themed hotel and conference center, exotic and historic car showroom and storage, car sales and service centers, and a restaurant. It's free to visit and the car collection is pretty amazing.

The idea for Meilenwerk is that car enthusiasts can come hang out, buy exotic cars and motorcycles, have those cars serviced on-site, and just generally enjoy the show. The photo below shows the service centers behind glass doors (they were closed as I visited on a Sunday), a boat-load of Ferraris, a Lamborghini, a bunch of other exotic cars, a fighter jet (yep, look again), and some other stuff:

Like I said, the "hardware" is pretty impressive. For example, just look at this exotic:

Nice. Huh? It's the type of place that my old San Diego MINI club would probably make a day of visiting. It's definitely a must-do if you're a car lover.

There was one especially unusual thing that I saw while there. Inside the men's room, there was a rack with brochures on it placed over the urinals. There were a couple that looked interesting but I didn't know if I should look while "there" or come back after washing my hands. I thought about it for a moment or two and then decided that somethings are better left alone and left without a visit to the library.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Adéu Barcelona - Guten Tag Stuttgart!

That's right!

I packed up my stuff...once again...and left Barcelona for Stuttgart, Germany. Due to an outstanding opportunity, and after weighing our options, we made the difficult decision to relocate. It's not permanent but we will be here for a little while.

I'm excited for the change but, at the same time, I'm sad about having to leave everything that I've grown to love over the last couple of years about Spain. I'll especially miss all the friends that I've made along with the dynamism, excitement, and diversity of Barcelona. I've learned so much from and am so appreciative of everyone. Thank you so much! (I won't try to name everyone but you all know as you've all made huge impacts on my life as well as cameos here on the blog.) I will miss you all but I know that I'll see you all again very soon.

So, next up? Stuttgart. Up until a few weeks ago I really didn't know anything about the city or, with the exception of a visit to Frankfurt last year, Germany as a whole. Well, flash forward to now and I've learned quite a bit, which I'll be writing about over time.

As for the mechanics, we've found a great place to stay that's clean, nice, convenient to transportation, and comes with a great roommate. Can I just tell you how blessed I've been to have had some incredible roommates? It's true! Overall, it'll serve as a great base of operations for the continuing saga of whereisdarrennow.

So, I'll leave this post, which is both a sad goodbye as well as a exciting look to the future, with a few random photos around the center of Stuttgart that I took on our second day in town. This is the main shopping street, named Königstraße (koo-nigg-strahs-sah) or Royal Street, with the Hauptbahnhof (main train station) in the background. Note that the train station tower (at the far end) has a very large rotating Mercedes logo on the top. (More on Mercedes in a future post.)

Stuttgart's the sixth largest city in Germany with a (city) population of about 600,000 or so. The city itself is not very large or dense, especially when compared to Barcelona, but it is very green. The state that it's in, Baden-Wüttemberg, is the one of the country's main wine-growing regions (which I'm looking forward to learning all about). This photo, taken from the top of the tower at the main train station, shows just how much a part of the region that wine is. These vineyards are like a five-minute walk from the very center of town!

Further down the Königstraße is the Neues Schloss, or New Palace, which was built in 1746 and served as the residence of the kings of Würtemberg until 1807. In front of the palace is a huge, open area that's a popular place for folks to sit and sun themselves on nice days.

As was with Frankfurt, there's not much old architecture due to the damage from World War II. Most of what's here that looks older has been rebuilt to look historical. I know that the buildings aren't all old but I guess I don't really care. Seeing them rebuilt to celebrate the area's history is very cool. This is a twice-a-week farmers market that happens in the Schillerplatz. The church on the left is the Stiftskirch, which is the city's main protestant church.

It's scary and exciting to be in a place again where I don't speak the language and have to learn about a whole new culture. Well, besides Philadelphia, that is. :-) It'll be a fun and interesting challenge to learn the language, become part of the community, and make it a great experience. Oh, and hopefully I´ll learn (and remember) a bunch of German and how to type those "extra" German letters soon!

Una vez mas, muchas gracias de nuevo a todos en Barcelona. Os extraño mucho! Nos veremos pronto!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Telemonegal Television Show Taping

Having lived in southern California for almost twenty years, I've had the chance to see a bunch of movies and television shows being made. For example, just about a year ago, when I was back in Los Angeles, I went to a taping of my friend John John's T.V. show, The Daily Habit. Regardless, I'm not some sort of spoiled snob like some people in California when it comes to "the Hollywood thing". Nope. I still get a kick out of seeing movies and television shows being made and even the occasional star sighting. Just like you, I have that deep-down dream of one day "being discovered". I know that living outside of New York or L.A. has reduced the chances of me somehow becoming famous (one can still hope) or even seeing something getting made...

So, it was with great excitement when my friend Pau Whatsapp'd me and said that he'd gotten tickets to the taping (do they still use that word?) of a local Barcelona television show. The show, Telemonegal, is produced at the Barcelona Television studios in the Vila Olimpica part of town right near where I play soccer sometimes.

Just like everything else in Spain, the taping starts late - like around 9pm in this case. I'm not sure why it's done so late because it's on like a 30-minute tape delay. We checked in at the lobby and waited with about a dozen other folks in attendance to be led to the studio where the show is filmed. The space looks like every other sound stage that I've ever been on with the bright lights, false backgrounds, cameras, less-than-Ikea-quality furniture, and a bunch of employees hanging around.

Pau and I with some members of the studio audience waiting for the show to start:

About ten minutes before the taping started, the star of the show, Ferran Monegal, arrived on the set and started reviewing his notes. There was a brief on-air discussion with a newscaster who was working the show before his about the night's show. The show itself is sort of like a cross between John Stewart and The (Talk) Soup (but more serious and less political) where the host shows video of and discusses today's current political, talk show, and sports events during the first half of the show and does an interview during the second half of the show. In this photo, Monegal is on the left and, that evening's interviewee, ex-Barça player, Carles Rexach, is on the right getting his makeup done:

The show was a lot of fun even if I couldn't really understand some of it since it was in Catalan. Guess what! I got my 15 seconds of fame during the show. About a minute or so before the show started, Monegal asked each of us in the audience where we were from. I wanted to say Poble Sec but Pau said that I should say the United States. Well, every time the U.S. came up during the show, the camera panned over to me and showed my silly grinning mug for a few seconds (yes it feels like minutes and yes the camera adds at least ten pounds!). You can watch the show if you'd like as it's now posted at the show's website. My first cameo is at just over two minutes into the show.

Just before we left, Pau got his photo with Rexach and Monegal:

It wasn't until about five minutes later that I thought that I should have gotten my photo with them as well. Oh well, it was a very fun and interesting evening...they even gave us T-shirts! But I'm still waiting for an agent to call me! Didn't someone see me? I'm a star now, don't you know???

Thanks once again Pau!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Casaramona Textile Factory (Caixa Forum)

My recent visit to the Codorniu cava factory reminded me of a bunch of other great architectural work by Josep Puig i Cadafalch. At Codorniu he had designed the building where there is now the reception, tasting, and shop areas as well as some other buildings spread around Catalunya. One of them is the Amateller House, which is, unfortunately, located next to the Casa Batllo on the Passeig de Gracia in Barcelona (left is Amatller and right is Batllo):

I say unfortunately because Casa Batllo is amazingly spectacular and gets all the attention while the Amateller House is "just" beautiful unless you spend the time to really see all its detail work. The building was renovated by Cadafalch around 1900 as the main residence of the Amatller family who (still) own a local chocolate company. It now houses Hispanic art collection and is worth at least a few minutes at a minimum to appreciate the outside...but...this story's about another Cadafalch building...

Located between the Olympic stadiums on Mont Juic and the Plaza España is probably one of the most beautiful factories ever built. Designed by Cadafalch in 1910 as the Casaramona Textile Factory, the building complex and towers is a "wow" example of Modernist (or Art Nouveau) architecture from the early 1900s Barcelona.

By the way, my photos for this story won't do the building justice as they were taken on a cloudy day.

The front of the complex faces Mont Juic and has metal and glass canopy: well as a very modern (and very white) "hidden garden" entrance that were added during the conversion to the Caixa Forum Museum in the 2000s:

I'm not crazy about the design of the canopy or the super modern entrance but the Caixa folks are really proud of it in all their materials. For me, it's just something to pass through on your way to get to check out the older parts of the complex. Once past the museum reception area you get to walk between and through the factory's original buildings.

The Casaramona factory was built to house a textile mill and incorporated many cutting edge at the time anti-fire measures because the owner's previous factory had burned down. My friend Pili, who's quite knowledgeable in fire prevention and propagation (seriously, she is an expert in this stuff), told me that the buildings were designed and spaced in such a way to reduce the likelihood of any fire that had started one area to spread to another area. Also, the two towers were actually large tanks that stored water to be used to fight any fires that broke out. You can see three different buildings and one of the water towers in this photo:

The factory's buildings were also designed to utilize (that newfangled) electric power, rather than coal or oil, and lots of natural light and ventilation. I especially like these skylights that allow light into the basement of the buildings:

I've been fortunate to have visited a bunch of textile mills all over the world and this one, by far, is the most beautiful. There are lots and lots of small details that make the whole complex lots of fun to see up close. For example, in this photo, you can see lots of ornate iron work, interesting curves and building elevations, as well as a cool chimney (the tan domed building in the background is part of the convention center across the street):

This mosaic, which shows Sant Jordi's dragon and a Catalan flag, along with its surrounding iron and brick work is extremely elaborate for "just" a textile factory:

The building was quite the hit in its day with the building itself as well as its architect winning several different awards at the time. Textile production at the factory lasted seven short years before the facility was closed down in the late 1920s. It was later used a warehouse and then as a combination police station and horse stable. It wasn't until right around the Barcelona Olympics that it was converted into its current use as the Caixa Forum museum:

One of my favorite things to do while visiting is to go up on the roof to see the bird's-eye view of the rest of the factory as well as the surrounding area. The roof, rather than being flat, has an undulating surface that's cool. I don't really have any good pictures of the roof or of its view so I decided to use this one from when Diana's mom and dad came from Colombia to visit us last spring and we were there:

The visit to Codorniu reminded me of so many other places in Barcelona that I've visited while living here. It's truly a spectacular and special city that has so much to see and do. The buildings and museum of the Caixa Forum are just another example.

Thanks again to Pili for the information about the building's fire prevention measures.