I walked the streets in my precious free hours, absorbing the architecture, the fountains, the art. I wanted that someone special to share it with. Like the last time. Eating paella and drinking sangria in the Mediterranean sunshine.
It was not going to happen like that so I walked by myself, purposefully, camera in hand. It was the small one, not a giant touristy one like the rest of the people. But I'm sure I still stood out.
I heard him talking. Assumed he was on the phone. Until he said "excuse me".
I turned. He asked if I was a tourist. I told him I was on business. His English was as bad as my Spanish. He asked if he could walk with me. Its a free city. How could I refuse?
My Spanish is terrible, but not without some understanding. He was Catalan. A chef in Barcelona. Lived near the the Museo Picasso. 28. Alberto. He introduced himself like a typical Spaniard. Two kisses; one on either side of my cheeks.
I stopped to chat at a streetside cafe. Drank bottled water while he drank coffee. When we ran out of our mutual stores of English and Spanish, I reminded him that I had to return to my friends at my hotel.
His English was perfect. "Kiss me." I shook my head no. He pouted. It didn't work. He didn't realize I had two children. I'm used to ignoring a pout aimed at getting something I'm not intent on giving.
I thanked him for the conversation. He leaned to kiss me. I gave him my cheek.
He pouted again. I thought he said "Manana." Then I realized he said, "Te amo."
I shook my head and laughed. "You don't love me."
I waved, and turned away.