Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Montserrat, Spain

*pic stolen fr Wikipedia hehehehehe*

such jagged mountain can put FEAR to so many ppl
it looked so odd on this rather flat terrain of Catalonia
hence it is called MontSerrat = Serrated Mountain

and JS promised Monkey we will go climbing on this very beautiful sunny day
O.O followed by >.< then :'((

it was rather early and I was shivering from the cold coz I was under-dressed
this mountain range was so misty and shrouded with clouds!!!

there are a few ways to get to Montserrat
tour bus, trains, funicular, cable car

we decided to be more adventurous, took the city fast train = 45 mins fr Barcelona
it stops directly at the cable car station and was really convenient
the ticket is a combo ticket so u basically need to show them ur single ticket for all your rides
we reached there about 9.40am and had to wait for a bit *in the cold*
coz the cable car only starts operation at 10am

yeah I know....my dress code and shoe-code and bag-code definitely not for climbing
the cable car service was constructed on 1930 by the Germans
wow it's 80 years old!!!
is it safe???
even the cable car itself looked so 30s
there's even a name for this - Aeri de Montserrat

with a span of 1350m it takes only 5 minutes to get up to the mountain
the steepest climb is about 45 degrees
and Monkey is a person who's very very very afraid of heights.....GAH!!!!
*frankly I had the most cable car rides in Barcelona, from city centre to parks, crossed ocean etc*
when the 1st batch of "kiasu" visitors got into the cable car, everyone wanted a view while I was clinging onto the middle :P
yep the kiasu visitors are all asians, mostly Japanese

then as the cable car swayed its way slowly up
u can hear bones rattling.....well that's mine
not fr the cold but FEAR

Montserrat was covered with clouds and mist
and our cable car gonna penetrate through all of that!!!!

Montserrat is a very holy site...
one of the holiest in Spain
it was identified as the location of the HOLY GRAIL by Arthurian myth
well I don't really know if it's a myth or not but each year thousands of pilgrims thronged this holy mountain
then we emerged from all the clouds and mist and saw the serrated rocks
WAHHHH it's so sunny up here!!!!!!
My body began to warm up and I feel so much better :)))))))))))

before I know it, we are soon approaching the station
it's not the top yet but the holy Monastery is there with Abbey Monks
we gonna pay them a visit hehehehehehehe

Montserrat is also very popular with Escolania Boys Choir
it is the OLDEST boys' school choir in Europe

then JS tapped my shoulder to turn my head back
and this was wat I saw.....
worth all the bones-rattle-rattling




*I don't need to write anything to describe the pic above*

with more serrated rocks everywhere!!!!
I didn't know where to feast my eyes upon!!!!

by then FEAR was gone and I was walking freely inside the 1930s Hitler-opps-I-mean-German-made cable car
trying to absorb all the beautiful scenery

the ride proved to be too short...
only 5 minutes -_-
but the amazing panaromic view...I can immerse innit for 5 hours

OKIE time to gather ourselves...I mean myself...
need the blood to drain back to my jellied legs
I felt so much better when my tiny feet touched the solid ground

yep when u are afraid of height that much....u really need something solid to stand on
but it didn't last long, coz for the entire day we were on this serrated mountain overlooking the plains thousands of feet down there....I felt so jelly-fied again
*is there such word?*

so I gotta feed myself first
JS had a foot long baguette with cheese and ham
*his favourite*
which he ate half, packed it into his bag to be continued when we were doin our hike
so u see he got a "packed" lunch for his hike....
and silly me being a virgin hiker didn't bring anything....only a small bottle of water
but trust me I was feeding on the sights and view...didn't need food at all!!!!!

after breakfast I was still WAH WAH-ING outside at the view
before JS pulled me to continue our visit
how can one be bored at this view????
as we continued the walk, I kept on looking back

*pic stolen fr the Web*
First stop - the Abbey of Montserrat

the story has it...back in 880 a group of small children saw bright lights descending on this mountain
at the same time they heard angels singing with beautiful music which moved them so much and filled their hearts with so much joy
they ran home to tell their parents
the adults then went to the same site and experienced the same for about a month
so this was the sign from God they said.....

I'm not a Christian nor a religious person but standing there then
listening to the monastery church bells - which can be heard throughout the mountain
and the beautiful sights already moved me to tears
Santa Maria de Montserrat Monastery
they were having a church service then, so we decided to come back later to visit the Black Virgin Mary
*more about this on my next posting*
When I looked up, there's a lil sneak peek of the serrated mountain
with beautiful clear blue cloudless sky
JS then proceeded with lighting candles for his sister and late father
Dear Saint Veeny.....may u get well soon and all of us are with you......all the time
Ignatius of Loyola in spanish it's Ignacio de Loyola
he was the founder of Society of Jesus
there are a few hotels up here.....
they are quite decent :))))))

my eyes kept on staring at those pinkish rock formation
so weird and yet so beautiful

before I have more time to admire its beauty ....
JS said: "Ok let's continue our journey and hike up."
I thought this was the highest point.....but looks like we gonna go up further!!!!

okie I will blog about it tomorrow....Montserrat part 2


Chasing Food Dreams said...

I love the yellow cable car...

the views from the cable car are spectacular.. I think I would be scare cos I super afraid of heights... hehehe!

I always cannot wait to see yr travels... makes me feel like I have travel too... :0)

The Yum List said...

Spain - one of my favourite countries to travel in - not just for the scenery but for the amazing food.

js said...

German technology is ichiban!!! Trust the cable car like you trust your bimmer :))

CHER-RY said...

Food Dreams: same goes here....reading ur blog makes me hungry all the time~~~~~ *stomach kluuu kluuu*

The Yum List: hello there :))) yep the food is exceptionally good with friendly service.....a lot to see. Definitely a country to return to :))))

JS: hehehehehe just as u've said it.."driving on a merc vs driving IN a beamer :P"