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Into Madrid

Not for long enough...

overcast 15 °C

Well, after the jiggling of our flights, we got to our apartment at 5pm. We had already sorted the dirty clothes to do some loads of washing. Imagine our surprise when we saw the space where the washing machine wasn’t!
Went for a wander to Plaza Major and the tourist info. Found out where the laundrette was supposed to be, but could not find it, but it may have been boarded up, this being Sunday. Wandered around a bit more, then had some tapas in a bar for dinner. Nothing special.
Headless man, Plaza Major

Headless man, Plaza Major


In the morning we were slow getting going, and abandoned the washing. We headed back to Plaza Major for a small walking tour group, which was informative, but not too thrilling. At the end we headed off for a salt cod paella for lunch.
The Ayuntamiento

The Ayuntamiento


Palacio Real

Palacio Real


Broke up at this time – G and I head up to Bernabau for a look about whilst L peruses the shops. We have a walk about and get a glance of the turf through an open gate. As soon as I raise the camera, someone closes it...
The Real deal

The Real deal


We walk around to the shop, and glance through everything. No pictures allowed in the Real Madrid shop either. We are going to do the tour at Camp Nou, not here. A few more photos and then we head off again to meet up with L at the apartment. Here we gather our strength and our washing and pack it off to the laundrette (which we have found) and start washing. We would go over time, but the owner is working late and lets us keep drying. At 8:45 we pack up and haul it all home, and spread all the not quite dry stuff everywhere in the apartment – makes the place a lot prettier!
Next morning the clothes are mostly dry thanks to the heater – but so are we – thirsty as ten men. For the first time in a long time we have cereal for breakfast – nice to do something normal for a change.
At the Prado

At the Prado


We are off and going in an attempt to get to the Prado early – well attempt, anyway. There at 10:30, and there is no queue to buy tickets. In we go and start to get overwhelmed by the immensity of it all. Velaquez, Goya, Ruebens, Bosch, Makita, Durer, El Greco – there are all there in abundance. Like any art, you like what you like, and while some of the lesser known pieces were knockouts. All in all, we were there for over four hours including statutory breaks. It was a very rewarding time.
What happened when the first elephant in space landed

What happened when the first elephant in space landed


Next we headed off for Reine Sophia Museum. Got there to find I can’t read English, and the museum is shut today. Bollocks! So G gets to choose – Museum of Science and Technology. Okay, walk 2 kms down to find it does not open for another 90 minutes – closed for Spanish lunch. Have a few pastries to fill in time, and then in to have a look around. It is a newish museum, and small. There is a history of typewriters as the main exhibit, but there are some cars and motorbikes to keep us interested.
Next head back to Puerta Del Sol, pick up a guide book to Spain, then grab some fresh cooked meat for dinner at a street market. Finish it off on the way to the movies.
My dinner (well, not all of it)

My dinner (well, not all of it)


Here we see ”Iron Man 2” which keeps G entertained and happy all the way back to the apartment. Pack up ready to pick up the car tomorrow.
After a quick breakfast, chat with our talkative key master, then onto the train out to the airport. The arrangement is we ring up, and they shuttle us out to pick up our new car. Once we are at the airport, we call up for 45 minutes, the tourist information people call up, none of our calls are answered. Give up and take a taxi there – and the driver adds to the frustration by stopping on the freeway for directions. Get around there and about to give them a serve when they let us know they have no power, no phones and they will pay for the taxi. Any aggro quickly dissolves as we can see the day he has had.
Into the new car – a Peugeot 308 SW with my name on the ownership papers. For the length of time we are here, the price of the lease is the same as a hire car, but we get insurance and assistance thrown in – another $900 worth. Well worth it.
Head out onto the road and away – free! Then we stop and look at the map so we know where we are going.

Posted by lostagain 14:48 Archived in Spain

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