Year Abroad #Madrid: I get to be a tourist!

October 15th, 2017:

So, last week on Wednesday my dear friend Lindsey arrived in Madrid to spend a long weekend with me. It was fantastic. I took her to all the main places: Plaza de Cibeles, Puerta del Sol, Parque de Retiro, Gran Vía etc. Unfortunately, we didn’t make it to the Reina Sofia/Prado Museum due to me being robbed on Sunday morning at a market. So I guess I should really say it’s been an adventure!…?!

Anyway. We also went out on my first night out in Madrid and it was fun! The club, Shoko, was open from midnight and if you signed up to a guest list you’d get in free. Also, it was a free bar (if you only wanted to drink beer or quite sweet sangria) until half past one. Drinks are quite expensive in clubs in Madrid – 8€ or 9€ – so we bought a coupon where we could get two drinks for 10€. The music was surprisingly good and we had a fabulous time. And by fabulous I mean we were suitably drunk (maybe more so…) and walked from La Puerta de Toledo to the Plaza Mayor where we sat and chatted for ages (I thought we were there for only about five minutes… but no…). Then we came across a McDonald’s and excitedly bought food. After that, I hadn’t eaten any of mine and just got into a taxi with Lins following.. and we got home safely. I think I had a lovely chat with the taxi driver as I can always speak amazing Spanish when I am intoxicated… And we crashed into bed.

We woke the following day feeling a tad sorry for ourselves. I was slightly hanging off the bed devouring cold McDonald’s chips to kill off any hangover that was coming for me. Now, unless you’ve done any of this – don’t judge!

And I can’t explain the happiness I felt when Lins asked me if I had eaten my cheeseburger. I responded, “What?! There’s a cheeseburger in there?” Lins: “Yes Gee..” Me: “WOOHOO. I didn’t have a clue about what I ordered!” and I pulled it out and ate it as happily as if a kid would when their mum has bought them ice cream as a treat. Despite the night out, we headed out into the open (at about half three) and had lunch … Do you know what? I can’t remember. It was good anyhow. OH! I remember. We ate at a little place at the end of the road near my flat, a place called ‘La Croquetta’. It was lovely. One would compare it to a little chic café in a quaint English town. Afterwards, we ended up walking to the Plaza de Cibeles where there is a tower nearby that you can see a lot of Madrid from. It’s part of the gallery – Círculo de Los Bellas Artes – and we decided to go up. It was also fantastic. It was basically a roof terrace with big sofas you can lie on or tables you can sit out as you look out over the sprawling city. We ended up sitting there for aaaages and having a cheeky sangria so we managed to see the sun start to set over the city too!

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Then on Saturday, we did a historical tour of the centre of the city that finished by the Spanish Palace, then we went to see the Atocha train station that had a tropical garden in it! And then we sat in and watched movies all evening with Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream. The last day, Sunday is a write off as my purse was taken at the El Rastro Market…. I feel utterly stupid, and so guilty for dragging Lins to a police station.. but (embarrassingly) relieved that so many people were waiting to see the police too!!

Anyway. All in all, it was a fantastic break and even better to catch up with a familiar face from home!! And if anyone else fancies a trip…. I have to say I am an amazing tour guide… haha!

Now back to being a Spaniard…..