A coupla weeks ago my roommates, their friends, and my friend Ian and I escaped to a wonderful beach about an hour south of Barcelona, just north of the small city of Tarragona. To my delight, this beach fulfilled most of my qualifications for greatness:
- isolated location, ideally a challenge to arrive at so as to keep it real (+keep the riff raff out);
- fine sand and crystal clear water, ideally with waves (lakes are boring);
- a good vibe, if indeed there are others at the beach;
- fun topography to explore, such as cliffs, rocks, dunes, or a forest;
- to bring: a few choice beach toys, food/drink, and, of course, good company.
At the beach, Ian and I ran and played like kids. I brought reading and did none of it. We threw the disc, played paddleball, walked up and down the coast and swam back along the cliffs. Ian, a wonderful guy who is also a bit too adventurous, also climbed not one but two cliffs starting from the water-- the second of which was at least 15m high and downright scary. I had never seen this done before and was relieved that Ian didn't ruin the day for all of us by falling. He came away with only a few scratches—sea-battered limestone is kind of sharp—but must have gotten quite a rush. I was unable to keep up with that but did manage to whip his ass in paddleball. Small victories, people.
All in all, a fine day trip which culminated perfectly with a little polylingual jam session and the consumption of tepid beer. Also, one of the prettiest topless girls insisted on doing handstands right in front of us. A great scene all around, and a lovely sunset as we walked back toward the cars along the longer, more popular beach further south.