How it’s built (plastic container edition) and Gaudi’s master work

It’s Monday night, we arrived Saturday late afternoon and spent the weekend walking, seeing sights, eating and drinking. Caught the Chiefs playoff game against Houston in an Irish pub that was at least half full of Americans. Saturday night we were exhausted after being up for 36 hours to get caught up to the time zone quickly. Sunday we were equally tired from miles and miles of walking. So I decided to wait to post until we had finished our first day of business meetings.

Train to Matero

Spanish business meetings generally don’t start until 9am or later, our meeting was at 10. The train ride to Matero was sunny and ran right along side the beach on the Mediterranean Sea. Waves crashed up and may have hit the side of the train. Our host at Logoplasti explained that the water level in the Mediterranean do not rise and fall with the tides, so the tracks can be built very close to SEA LEVEL. It was gorgeous, and peaceful to watch the waves roll in on our morning commute.

Matero beach apartments

Matero is an industrial town, apart from a few shops and hotels serving the beaches, and a surprisingly large number of auto show rooms, we saw mainly large manufacturing plants. Logoplasti is a global company, specializing in plastic container fabrication and the “hole in the wall” manufacturing strategy, where their product is delivered to the client literally through an open hole in the physical party-wall between the two plants using an automatic conveyor system. We heard a presentation on company culture, history, and strategy. Then we took a tour through the container fabrication plant. Closing with a little more Q & A, we presented our hosts with some UMKC and Kansas City gifts to show our appreciation for their hospitality.

Factory tour

We then headed directly to the Sagrada Familia, Gaudi’s master work which is still under construction today (but does host mass). After an hour or so, the group was ready to head to the hotel to get out of our suits when we discovered the basement with the exhibits of Gaudi’s models and drawings. Another hour later we worked our way through twin souvenir shops and then found our way back to the hotel. Restaurants open at 8pm, dinner was Tapas at 9:30pm followed by churros and cups of thick hot chocolate or gelato.

Sagrada Familia, Barcelona

As I start writing this blog entry, it is midnight. I suspect that Spain more than any other country prompts the visitor to sleep fewer hours and burn the candle at both ends. But as an ambassador of our school, our community, and our country, we do have an obligation to not show up half asleep, so I will keep this short and grab some sleep.