I’ve just returned from a short city break to Barcelona with friends. We had an enjoyable time, although it was unusually hot for the time of year. Bearing in mind I live in England, where temperatures of 29 degrees or more make headline news! Yet, even the owner of the apartment we rented commented on how it was hotter than the norm for September. Some days my friends and I would chase the shade wherever we could find it, as we feared our skin would start to sizzle if it caught sight of the sun. I love city breaks though. Probably because I live in a seaside town and therefore love to spend time wondering around museums and galleries, looking at incredible architecture and eating wonderful food. The only thing I’m not so keen on is the noise. Shortly before I went away I was moaning that the new fridge the landlord had bought for my flat was noisy and sometimes woke me up at night, and my windows are broken, so I haven’t got any fresh air at the moment either (hopefully they’ll be fixed soon). Yet after four days in Barcelona, I was longing for the peace of my flat, even with the fridge and stuffy air. When you first arrive in a city, the sounds of life are exciting and add to the feeling of ‘here we are! Let’s explore!’ However, after a few days of this I do long for my humble abode, with often only birdsong or the lift for aural stimulation. My brother said to me today that we often don’t realise how lucky we are, and it’s only by seeing the world from a different point of view that we understand this. My friends and I flew back from Barcelona on an early evening flight, and so when I entered my home, all was silent … and I immediately turned the radio on!