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From Bay Area to Barcelona

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La Playa [ Sunday, 08 May 05 | 09:52 ]
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The beach gets more use as the temperature slowly rises here. Daytime temperatures are now around 21-22℃ (70-72℉) and that brings out more people each day. El Masnou has two beaches: Masnou and Ocata. They are situated on both sides of the marina, which my piso overlooks. I am closest to the Masnou beach and Ocata is less than a 10-minute walk. Ocata is a Blue Flag beach. Weekends especially bring out beach lovers. There are usually a number of surf fisherman that can be spotted in the late afternoon as well.

They have already erected a temporary wood building and a tent top at the Masnou beach where you can buy cold drinks and snacks. In mid-June the lifeguard service starts. There are showers and lots of trash/recycle bins that are provided by the ayuntamiento (city council).

I haven’t ventured out into the water yet as I think it’s still around 14℃ (57℉). Last September when I was here, the water temperature was 26℃, or about 80℉.

On weekends there are regattas that I can watch from my terraza. There are a lot of Laser racing dinghys at the marina as well as some other classes of sail boats.

Almost daily there is a sea-breeze that blows more or less parallel to the coast. In Badalona there are often a number of windsurfers and kite surfers taking advantage of the breeze. It reminds me a lot of Richmond and the Bay.

It will be interesting to see how much of a breeze there is here during the summer months. In Richmond the summer weather pattern created a breeze along with low clouds and fog nearly every day. Often the breeze was too strong and too chilly to be comfortable outside in the late afternoon and evening.

San Francisco is famous for its cold summers due to the same pattern caused by the Central Valley heating up and drawing cold Pacific air through the Golden Gate. In contrast, nights are pleasant for strolling in Barcelona as it does not cool off as much. The sidewalk cafés are full of people every night.

60-year Drought

That was the headline I saw in one of the free newspapers this past week. For the current season this area has had about half of the usual rainfall. That might be the reason why this rainy season hasn’t seemed very rainy to me.

Last Monday we had some showers and there was the typical evening thunderstorm, what they refer to as a tormenta mediterránea.