Madrid, Spain – March 26, 2011
Leslie and I went on a 4.2-mile “death march” through Madrid today. We left home at about noon and walked to the light rail station, Pozuelo Oeste, near our home. Once on the Metro, we made our way to the Plaza de España stop.
When we emerged from the Metro, we found ourselves at the corner of Gran Via and the plaza. We crossed the street and sat down by a large fountain. There was a bazaar set up at the plaza. The bazaar had everything from candy to jewelry, from t-shirts to posters. I would guess there were about 50 booths set up.
In the center of the plaza is a large obelisk. In front of the obelisk is a large statue of Miguel de Cervantes and a bronze depiction of don Quixote and Sancho Panza.
After exploring the plaza, we crossed the street to the west. There was an old church there, the parish of St. Teresa and St. Joseph. We went inside and looked around. From there we walked up the hill to the Templo de Debod. It is an Egyptian temple given to Spain in recognition of Spanish engineers that helped with the construction of the Aswan Dam.
As we walked through the park around the temple, we came across a man playing guitar and singing. He was playing near an overlook. His name was Willie Garcia. We bought his CD titled “Sin Razon” (Without Reason). We sat about 10 feet away from him on a park bench. We sat there and listened to him for a good 30 minutes. From where he was playing, one got a good view of the Palacio Real and the Catadral Almudena.
When we left the park, we went hunting for an ATM. It did not take long to find one. They seem to be located about 100 feet apart in this country! We made our way back to Gran Via and walked along the street in a southeasterly direction. Gran Via is somewhat equivalent to Broadway in New York.
We sat at a sidewalk cafe and had a glass of wine. After our wine, we continued until we found McDonald’s. Leslie thought that sounded good, so we had lunch there. Then we made our way to the Gran Via Metro station. We took the Metro to the stop at República Argentina. That was very near the party we were to attend, beginning at 19:00. We arrived near 18:00. We asked the portero (door attendant) if he knew where a small grocery store may be located. We followed his instructions and finally found one. We bought a couple of bottles of wine to take to the party.
As tired as we were, we only lasted until about 21:00. We walked back to the Metro to go home. We made it home just after 22:00.