When I ended up abruptly with a five day weekend, my lovely German friend who I’d met in Barcelona was kind enough to let himself be coerced into taking a trip back to Spain and to Madrid with me.
I had the most exasperating airport experience of my life in Rabat, but managed to make it to Madrid a little after my friend’s flight had arrived. Just after midnight on a Thursday night we took the metro down to our hostel, where we dumped our stuff before venturing into the streets.
My body still isn’t quite used to non-Dubai temperatures, but I was enthralled by the misty rain coming down and almost instantly was in love with the windy cobbled streets of Madrid. I still can’t pinpoint why, but I love city innately.
We found a lovely cafe open at all hours and had chocolate con churros, something all the Spanish textbooks I’d used had told me about, and that sealed my love for Madrid.
The next morning, we set off with some semblance of a plan and a bunch of stars marked on our maps. Travelling with my friend took away a lot of the minor stresses I normally experience while exploring that mainly revolve around decision making, and he deserves a medal for putting up with my indecisiveness.
We came across a gondola that took us across part of the city and to Casa de Campo park for less than five Euro, to my delight. Though it was extremely overcast, the views were stunning.
The Royal Palace reminded me a little of Anderson Park in Invercargill. Though in the middle of the city, gorgeous gardens surrounded it and there was even a pond with many friendly birds being fed.
The Temple of Debod is apparently the most beautiful place in Madrid to watch the sunset. Sadly, there were far too many clouds. Nonetheless, the temple, donated by the Egyptian government, was an intriguing structure.
In the evening, we went out in search of tapas. The first two places we went to were fabulous, and though I’m not usually very carniverous, the mousse de foie was the most delicious meat I’d ever eaten. By the third place, however, my Spanish comprehension obviously went out the door; instead of ordering a plate with four varieties of tapas, I managed to order us four plates of tapas!