Sunday, January 18, 2015

Our Camp Nou Experience

Més que un club. More than a club. This is the first thing you'd see, if coming from the stadium's museum, as you make your way outside. The only word of the FC Barcelona motto I understood that time was club. When in fact, it means that it's more than a club. But it wasn't the only faux pas I had done because to begin with, I am not a football fan nor a fan of any sports for that matter. I even quipped to Breinn that FC stands for "feeling close". I know, I am just hopeless. haha

My early recollection of football or soccer in my side of the world (because we are heavily influenced by America) was during college. I have a friend who was in the varsity team of my university and I remember clearly the black and blue bruises she got after practice. The university canteen is also facing the soccer field and in some few instances, I switched my attention to the players in the field. The expanse of the field that the players had to run back and forth was so daunting for someone like me who has no sports inclination whatsoever.

I have been always a wimpy kid, attributed by my countless scars in my arms and legs. I stumble easily even on flat surfaces and my endurance into anything physical is poor. With this realization early on in life, I never bothered to get my hands into sports. And I can go on and on self-deprecating when it comes to this aspect of my life. :p

However, this does not stop me from doing the Camp Nou experience. So how was it for me who almost had no clue on what she's getting at?

We did the Camp Nou experience on our second day in Barcelona. Barcelona has a good subway system and getting to Camp Nou was then easy peasy. 

After buying our tickets, we followed the stream of crowd into the museum and found ourselves in a dark hall with illuminated displays. We only had audio guides so, we had no idea which way to go first. It was a strange jungle out there for the clueless! With my cousin heading to the restroom first, I went up a ramp and found these really cool and state-of-the-art touch screens wherein you can drag and drop game highlights for you to replay. There are even videos of games several decades ago! The nerd in me was having the time of her life! But of course, I got hooked with how incredible the players were. Maybe I wasn't entirely clueless then because I certainly gaped in amazement on Lionel Messi's impressive goals.

But it turned out this floor I ended up with is supposedly upon exit. I was literally lost. haha

I retraced my steps again and reunited with my cousin afterwards. We then went around for more of the museum's exhibits, appreciating their numerous grand trophies. If you're an avid fan, you would definitely be carried away with how much history you can look back through the museum's many displays. Old uniforms. Old footballs. And almost any memorabilia of FC Barcelona in its 115 years of existence.

These four kids have the built of future football players. Perhaps, one of them could be famous. I should have asked an autograph aside from this picture! lol

The Camp Nou experience includes tour and the museum. Tour means you can go inside where the players will be if there are actual games. Yes, locker rooms and shower rooms, friends. To keep this post in a wholesome light, I intentionally put the chapel picture last. :p This is where players say their prayers before heading out to the field. If there is a game however, the tour is obviously not open for the public. What were you just thinking??

The stadium looks dull because of thousands of empty seats, save those few, occupied by visitors. The field was off limits and you're just there to admire how superficially green the grass is. But somehow, I was entertained by my audio guide with quirky details, like it tells you how you can feel what it's like coming from the dugout and unto the field. The major difference is that there are no crowds cheering for you.

After soaking in the vastness of the field, we then went up to the press boxes, which offer a good view of the entire stadium. The audio guide was indeed a great help for us in navigating a behemoth that is Camp Nou.

Towards the end of the tour, we were just goofing around with the posters of the current players of FC Barcelona. No such thing back home, you know.

The goofiness we also brought outside and that's how epic fail I was in trying to imitate the muscular statue. Even the guy in red shorts did not want to see.

The tour was physically draining (Please don't judge me.) that we had to grab our lunch right after. And we chose a good table. You know what I mean.

The Camp Nou experience was enlightening for those like me who don't breathe and live football. It gave me an impression on how much FC Barcelona is revered by fans, not just in Barcelona but also in other parts of the world. Football isn't merely a game but it goes far beyond. I, as a non-football fan have no idea how to explain it. Maybe FC Barcelona's motto says it all and that it's more than a club.

It would probably be a more worthwhile experience if we watched a real game. That way, the stadium wouldn't be so forlorn and empty anymore.

Our tickets:
Adult Ticket - €23
Audio Guide - €5

You can get there easily by train. Nearest station is Palau Reial.

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