I needed a break. And so here I am, sitting in a hotel room in Madrid, enjoying it to bits.
Before I arrived in Madrid, I spend two days in Barcelona, not doing much at all. I walked around a bit, visited some churches, walked around some more, had lunch, rambled through the old town, went to the beach, saw some more sights, ate a bit, visited the Sagrada Família, and then I took the train to Madrid.
(Spain—or at least, the part between Barcelona and Madrid—is weird. One moment you’re speeding with 300 km/h through green pastures, and then you might as well be on the moon. And there are a lot more hills and/or mountains than I expected there to be…)
Since I arrived here, I’ve done more or less the same as in Barcelona: walking around and seeing sights. One thing’s different, though. At about one o’clock in the afternoon, a significant part of the city comes to a grinding stop. Shops, museums, churches, just about everything you might want to take a look at closes up for lunch, siesta, whatever. Which, seen from a northern European mindset, is kinda weird. But it’s also a good excuse to do nothing but sitting on a terrace drinking cervessas, or loiter about in a park with a book. I’m not opposed to that at all.
The only thing I’m not really getting the hang of, so far, is the culinary experience. The whole “if you really want to look like a tourist, show up for dinner at six” thing takes some getting used to. Now I normally don’t eat before seven, but going out for dinner at nine is pushing it. Also, I’m terrible at making at picking restaurants. As in: I can’t choose. And since every other building seems to be a restaurant, imagine my, well, problem.
Nevertheless, I’m enjoying this little trip to pieces. Tomorrow I’m going to do the one thing I planned on doing in Madrid—visit the Prado (#94)—and saturday I’m flying back home.
(I’ve put up a couple of photo’s from Barcelona already, but the next batch requires more sorting out than I’m willing to do now.)