Friday, September 16, 2005

I definitely need to get better at posting while on the road. Sorry for the long lapse and I hope it won’t take so long ever again.

Will, Kat and I arrived in Barcelona around 11AM on Tuesday and decided to go to Valencia for 2 days since we’d be spending so much time in Barcelona during and after the tournament. I originally had planned to play in a smaller tournament on Wednesday but I decided it would be more fun to check out another city and I’d also be able to adjust to the time change better. We had a great time in Valencia and I don’t regret going at all. We found a very basic place to stay, San Jose hostel. It was pretty ghetto but pretty cheap so I was fine with it. The heart of the city is really old and it reminds me of a lot of great European cities with amazing architecture and cool little mazes of roads that make the cities really fun to explore. One word to the wise: If you ever travel with Will, do NOT let him navigate. North is South, East is West and we always wound up at the train station no matter where we wanted to go. We had some really bad meals at some really cheap restaurants and drank quite a bit of beer. Two places that I highly recommend if you ever go to Valencia: Bar Pilar, great atmosphere, delicious mussels and relatively inexpensive, and Radio City. It sounds pretty cheesy but Radio City was the coolest club we could find. There were more locals here than any other place we could find and the dance floor was pretty crowded. On Wednesday night we cut a mean American rug until it closed around 4 AM.

Thursday we caught the train back to Barcelona. The round trip ended up being around 60 Euros, pretty expensive compared to the travel I did in Eastern Europe but I guess it’s to be expected in Spain. We checked in at the Barcelona Princess around 6 PM and left the memories of the San Jose Hostel far behind. This hotel actually has a door on the shower and a window that looks out over the city instead of a brick wall. I went to the casino last night for a bit and hung out with the PokerStars people who have been kind enough to sponsor me in this tournament. I met some really cool people and got my first taste of the Barcelona nightlife. Will and Kat stayed out until about 4 AM again but I came back early to make sure I would be well rested today. I’m really excited for the tournament and let’s hope I get lucky.

Here are some good places to receive updates:

The second page is run by a guy named Pauly and he’s a really great writer. I met him last night but I’ve been reading his blog for a few months now. He’s covering the event for Poker Player newspaper and I think he’ll have updates throughout the day. Of course I’ll try to post as much as I can. Let’s hope I don’t have any time for posting because I’m busy playing all night. It’s about an hour 'til gametime so I'm going to head over to the Casino. Talk to you soon.


Anonymous said...

Brandon, glad to hear your having fun. My trip to West Virginia for white water rafting and to Pennsylvania for caving don't seem as fun after reading your blog, grrrr. Anyway, just thought I'd let you know I am reading your blog. Good luck in the tournament and have fun, Mike Vargo.

Anonymous said...

I am glad that you have this blog, because both you and i are terrible at keeping up w/ each other. I just read what happened in the tourny....sorry bro, but i'm sure you are living a tough life in barcelona right now. take it easy man!

meanhappyguy said...

Didn't know you read Pauly's blog too, I had that on my favorites at work down in sacramento... one of the few (and best!) blogs I could read with the damn firewall Barry Greenstein set up... (for some reason you can get to his site as well?)

I was amazed to read on taopoker that you and Pauly were hanging out, couldn't wait to get back from the temp job and see what happened at the tourney. Sounds like some pretty bad luck on the seating, but more air-time for you, so that's cool. If you can get your hands on some more EuroSport videos and are swinging through Portland I'll make room on my computer.

It'd be interesting to hear Pauly commentating, "Looks like Schaefer is going all-in here. An interesting move. It reminds me of last night when he and I were hanging out at the strip-joint down the road and the girl asked if we had ever been 'sucked out on the turn.' "

meanhappyguy said...

Carl's in the last three in Pot Limit Omaha right now, $33k+ coming his way soon :)

Anonymous said...

good luck brandon, wish I could be there with you guys to make fun of will and his poor navigational skillz. barcelona won't know what hit'em once they get a taste of what seatown has to offer. boyeeee

Anonymous said...

You remind me my trip to this beautiful city. I went to Barcelona with a friend for 3 nights and 4 days at the end of May 2006. This was a nice time of year to visit as the weather was hot and sunny, but not overbearing.
We were lucky cause among plenty of wonderful hotels in Barcelona we chose one that was in the Raval area, about 10 minutes walk from the Ramblas.
I fell in love with Barcelona and it's beautiful architecture, there is so much to see and could have stayed for longer, however, you can get to see a lot in a day as it is not that big and is easy to get around.