In general I love Barcelona and my life here, but I do have to have an honest, not-so-happy-go-lucky post once in a while. Marina, her sister Elisa and their friends and I decided to check out the Jazz & Food Festival in Poblenou on Saturday night. It's a 12 hour festival finishing at midnight, and we arrived around 8:30 pm to a disorganized disaster. (They claim that this is the last and "best" day of the Voll-Damm week long festival).
1) There was NO JAZZ. Spain, I understand that you tend to stick to the unfortunate stereotype that the country is disorganized and inefficient, but seriously?! They were playing "gypsy music" --Marina and I are not sure if this is at all the politically correct term, but that's what was displayed on the giant projector screens. Basically it was eclectic, sometimes off-tune and genre-less.
2) There was NO FOOD. That's right, they ran out of food. Remember, Spanish people eat at 10pm, so expecting food at 8:30 is not unreasonable. Not only did they run out, they continued to sell "tokens" and did not put any sort of sign up that they were sold-out. Marina and I were lucky enough to find out because we tried to ask for vegetarian food. The other people were queueing for a long time. Even if we had gotten food, it was about three times the price it normally should have been.
Except for the Ramen stand, where you had to pay 5 euros for a bowl of ramen, but queue until you could get a seat. There was enough seating for SEVEN people. Yup.
3) There was NOWHERE TO QUEUE. This is very Spanish anyway (think: the metro), but really - you had no idea which line was for what.
4) There were NO RETURNS ON TOKENS. That's right, we're out of food, but you can't return the tokens (minimum 10 euro spend to even BUY a token). We ended up in a queue of tens of people complaining that they want to return the tokens they had bought minutes before. The lady at the desk answered in Catalan and basically said the only way to get your money back would be to either spend it all on drinks, or write a letter to the organizers and ask for the money. Ha. Like that would even work in Spain. Luckily, we sold our remaining tokens to drunk people in the drinks queue.
Yes, a bit of grumpy post. I had an incredibly long and stressful week (data collection, yay) and was really looking forward to a Saturday night out. I guess I'll have to check out some real jazz spots in Barcelona ---stay tuned!