A Sunday in Spain Springing Forward up Montserrat


Something just didn’t seem right when I woke up this morning.

In my Spanish castle huge bedroom the iPhone says it’s almost 6:00 a.m. Outside, however, it’s dark as can be. I see sparkling stars dotting the remote country sky, and that’s about it. I make my way down the stairs to the kitchen, and finally figure it out. The clock on the wall opposite the stove ticks quietly away an hour earlier than my phone. It’s daylight savings, the day to spring forward here in Spain. I look out the window at the just brightening mountains and misty vineyards and have to laugh. I just went through this a couple weeks ago in New Hampshire.


In this restored Spanish castle called Anima Mundi we hold yoga retreats. I have four people scheduled today for 8:00-8:30 a.m. meditation, followed by an hour of yoga. After that, breakfast, and then a drive to Montserrat. I’ve been in Spain less than a week, but everyone I talk with tells me I must see Montserrat. I actually did see it on my first morning in Barcelona. Way off in the distance outside this beautiful city, a towering mountain with rock formations unlike any I’ve ever experienced pointing straight up into the rich blue sky. In the car now, but approaching from the other side, I see them from the passenger seat. We’re going up there?


Montserrat has been a monastery for over 1,000 years! It is also a mountain sanctuary, a geological phenomenon, a cultural center and open air museum. We want to get there in time for a noon presentation of L’Escolania de Montserrat, one of the oldest boy’s choirs in Europe, but as we ascend the winding road in on this Sunday morning I see a lot of other people do as well. We park along the road rather than wait in traffic and hike up a kilometer or two…enjoying the views along the way.


We could have taken that yellow cable car up – can you spot it way down there? – but hiking provides a better workout! 🙂


Up top now, joining the throngs under a warm alpine sun, I am, well, there’s no other description for it…amazed by all that is way up here at this elevation.





I love the markets! Even so, I resist the urge to buy some cheese, wine, and other things in bottles made by monks and go recline for the duration of the afternoon in some sunny, grassy place up here, analyzing clouds blowing over the Pyrenees. After all, I am here with four wonderful yoga guests of our retreat representing England and Spain, and they want to move.


They rightfully want to move! They’ve been at a yoga retreat and are now reinvigorated to the max. The elevation, the climbing does not phase them. I joke that my vegan cooking for the retreat has also provided them this remarkable energy. Hey look, there’s a cross way up over there. Of course we’ll power up and check it out because that’s what people out from a yoga retreat do.


They do take a few minutes and honor my request to stop for a photo…but only a few minutes. Then it’s off to see more!




Back in the car following the hairpin turns down, we find the sweet voices of L’Escolania on the radio. We didn’t hear the boys singing in person, but we hear them now. Yes, angels indeed. The end to a perfect day, even with one hour taken away by a surprise, encore daylights saving event.

Love and Peace,


10 thoughts on “A Sunday in Spain Springing Forward up Montserrat

  1. OMG! Built right into the mountain I can’t imagine the difficulty the workers endured to built those beautiful buildings that people are still enjoying. Your pictures tell such s fantastic story. I can’t imagine going through daylight savings twice. Yuk! Sent from XFINITY Connect Mobile App

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hey Dave! What an absolute stunner of a blogpost. It was a real honour to meet you this weekend; to experience your fantastic cooking, company and yoga! I feel refreshed and rejuvenated – not only from the retreat but from the high of meeting such wonderful people too. As this was our first yoga retreat, and we were your first guests, it seems there is some kind of balance in that – like yoga itself!

    Many thanks for all your efforts to make our stay so enjoyable. Wishing you all the best and much happiness in all that you do.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Phenomenal! Thank you for sharing. This is on my bucket list along with hiking El Camino de Santiago…. maybe someday! Enjoy every moment!


    1. Thank you for your kind comment, Patty! I hope you get to do everything on your bucket list. Why not? Interesting you mentioned El Camino! Check out my next post. It focuses on Manresa, the end of the Ignatian Way retracing the route of Saint Ignatius of Loyola in 1522.


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