Wax&Bombing Recap by Jamie Reid Part 2.
We wake up nice and late after getting back to the hostel at around 2am, shattered after a long day of travelling and a long night of skating.
Little did we know at the time, but the previous night was going to set the tone for the rest of the trip.
Oli, Alex and some of the P.A.L.C.O crew met us at our hostel the next afternoon to go session the local area.
We sat outside the hostel setting up skates with some new bits courtesy of some very nice companies, and then headed off in the warm afternoon sun.
We went to a few local spots, all of which were just down from Mt Tibidabo and then cruised around a bit getting some shots before heading to a skatepark that had apparently been built 20 years ago for the Barcelona Olympics ( nothing like that for London this year )
Romain seemed to have settled in to skating by this point, and was tearing up a really sketchy bowl so Oli could get some interesting shots and footage.
We stayed there for a while until it was suggested we’d head back into the main town for some dinner.
Before dinner we popped into Oli’s house, which is like an art gallery with loads of great paintings all around, and an area where what can only be described as a collection of skates and skate parts is stored and displayed. It would actually put some so called skate-shops back in the UK to shame!
We checked out some footage from the previous day, and managed to communicate with each other quite well by this point.
Just to mention, I speak hardly any Spanish, Catalan or French, so I was really glad that everyone we met spoke English to a certain degree.
I would advise however that you learn some basics if you’re going to visit, even if it’s just to be polite and to be seen to be making an effort.
By the time I left I was able to string basic sentences together, and was quite proud of myself.
On to dinner round the corner, and then into the town to enjoy some music at one of the many free gigs happening over the 4 day weekend festival of La Merca ( Catalan festival )
Food and drink by this point had been a lot cheaper than I’d expected. For dinner I had more than I could manage, along with a couple of glasses of wine and spent less than €8. That just meant more money for beers!
Day 2 was a Saturday, and was a bit of blur for me as I was trying to take in the sights, enjoy skating and getting to know all the people we’d met so far.
The city on the second day was even more impressive than I’d realised. It’s almost like a town planner had a meeting with skatepark designers and said “I don’t want it to be too obvious, but let’s make it like a giant skatepark”
By this point I no longer felt like a stranger in a strange town, but like I was enjoying a day with old friends, despite language barriers and so on.
Chill out time!
Again we got up late, chilled around the hostel for a bit and then ventured back into the town to go meet the guys for a bit of a non-skating day.
There were loads of music events happening all over the city while we were there, and so we started the day by heading to an event near Oli’s place called Piknik-electronik, which was up on the hill overlooking downtown Barcelona.
We stayed there a while, enjoying the music and the general atmosphere, and then agreed we’d go check out the bigger event down in Forum.
Oli, Alex and some of the rest had to head off early, mostly because of work the next day, or that night in Oli’s case to do work on multiple web pages.
So off to a party by the sea at Forum with Lidia, Andres, Zhivko, Danilo, Yunio, Romain and myself.
The party at Forum was basically cheesy euro-pop music, but still a really good vibe because everyone there was having a great time.
There must have been upwards of 50,000 people there that night, both inside the gates and out on the streets.
Yunio was proving his reputation as a ladies man by getting Romain to translate to a French girl for him, and then disappearing off with her.
Danilo and Lidia were getting their salsa moves on ( Danilo is from Brazil, and the boy’s got skills )
I was shattered by around 3am, but couldn’t get back to hostel easily as the Metro was closed. This meant we were wandering around until we got near to Lidia’s place, where she offered to drive Romain and I back to the Hostel.
Lidia’s place was nowhere near where we were staying, and despite her driving like Fernando Alonso, we didn’t get back to our hostel until well past 4am.
“Chill out day”…… really ???
The last day of La Merca festival, and the first day we met with Mark Mc Dougall.
Mark had made his own plans to fly out from Dublin to come and skate in Barcelona, and by a massive coincidence hadn’t known about the Wax&Bombing event until after he’d booked his flight.
Turned out that he arrived late on Sunday, and would hang out with us each day until the Saturday afternoon when both our flights would be leaving around 3pm.
If you’ve seen some of the footage from the event on Powerblading.org and want to see more before the final edit ( which has probably been made by now ) then check out Mark’s too, the guy took some great photos and video.
Monday ( day 4 ) was a bit of a street spot and skatepark day, where we met up with a few more local skaters including Carlos Bernal and Michel Prado, as well as Julian Coulter from the UK who’s been living in Barcelona for some time now.
We managed to get in some famous spots through the day. The spine mini by the seafront, the long kink rail as seen in Oli’s “Beach” edit, the curved ledges ( where I ripped my jeans in the crotch! ) the ledges that look like benches at Forum and the crazy waves type skatepark…..thing, that was so much fun to just pump around.
Michel and Carlos were going off on home turf, throwing 5’s over the rail at the back of the waves, and Julian was getting all Parkour styled hopping over the rails into the waves the wrong way.
The guy is like some sort of Bruce Lee flexible ninja on skates!
Oli had heard through one of his friends at the Inertia skateshop that there was a dried up pool nearby that we could skate, and so we all went off in a group of about 15 of us to hunt it out.
When we got there it turned out to be some sort of artificial river system built in a park within a loads of apartment blocks.
At first all we saw was damp and muddy ditches, but after checking it out a bit more it turned into a pretty cool place to hang and skate in for a while.
Oli filmed the whole group of us racing around, which was a bit sketchy at times because of the raised drainage points that where hidden under leaves.
After we’d been in the “ditch” for a while we all headed back into the town towards Placa Espanya to go watch the fireworks and the end of La Merca.
The fireworks show was ending just as we got there, but still managed to catch the finale.
A few of the group headed off home after wards, and the rest of us went to go Hillbomb Montjuic again.
Well that was the plan anyway. My night got cut short when I went to go get some water from a service station, and then got my lag ran into my a total dickhead on a moped, who rode off.
That was my night of skating over with, so I hobbled back to the metro with Mark, who at this point needed some dinner.
Ice and some painkiller soon saw me off to bed before 1am, which was the earliest night I had there.
To be continued…