Adam in Barca

July 27, 2009, 12:32 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

For a change of pace, I thought it would be nice to leave the city. I took a day trip to Montserrat (“Serrated Mountain”). The image of the mountain is very distinctive and well known in Catalonia; you can see it in the distance on the northern side of the city, with massive wind- and rain-worn stones across the top. Catalonians have such affection for it that, apparently, “Montse” is a common name for girls.

It takes about an hour by train to get to the base of the mountain, and then another 30 or so to get to the top. The main feature, once you get there, is a Benedictine monastery, founded in 1025 after a vision of the Virgin Mary. It’s one of the more amazing places I’ve seen; I hope the photos I’m posting do it some justice. The monastery, which has been tended to by monks for centuries, looks like any of the great churches of Europe… except for the fact that it’s perched on the edge of a cliff, thousands of feet above sea-level. You can see Barcelona, the ocean, and even the Pyrenees in the distance. I was there at a quiet time of day, so you could walk around the perimeter of the complex in calming solitude.


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