Barcelona, Spain from the airplane window.

Barcelona, Spain from the airplane window.

I don’t think Spain likes me.

My first visit was in 2005. I had just graduated college and planned to work in Madrid as an au pair for a few months before I started my career. It was a disaster. The kid didn’t like me. The mom didn’t like me. If the family had a dog, it probably wouldn’t have liked me either.

Needless to day, I did what any level-headed 22-year-old would do – told the family that an imaginary aunt had died and begged my mom to fly me home early.

Six years later, I tried to give Spain another try. This time we checked out Barcelona. Everything was humming along smoothly until the last day when I went to pull out some cash for the taxi ride to the airport. I found a Caja Madrid ATM, inserted my card, punched in my PIN and voila! a Spanish error message that loosely translated to “Sorry, Americana, this debit card is now ours.” (I hadn’t reached the Dealing with Evil ATMS and Bank Tellers chapter in Rosetta Stone yet.)

Okay, so in the scope of life this wasn’t really a big deal. But it was a major drag and dealing with it pretty much wasted our last night in Barcelona. It also backed my theory that Spain might not care for me.

Have you ever felt that a destination just didn’t like you?

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