This blog is completely and totally out of chronological order at this point but whatever.
I went back to Madrid from England at the end of July because 1. That’s where I booked my flight home out of waaaay back last November and didn’t feel like changing my flight. and 2. It gave me another chance to see the boy before leaving.
We spent two days together in Madrid before I left last Friday and let me just tell you, if you ever want a weird experience in a city, visit it with your significant other only a few days before separating for an extended period of time. Madrid represents a lot of really bittersweet feelings for me these days, but we managed to have a ton of fun despite the looming “D-day” (Departure Day).
The apartment I rented for those few days was a two-minute walk from Puerta del Sol, aka a place full of places to eat and a main metro hub, not to mention a 10-minute walk from Plaza Mayor and all the museums. Aka a perfect location and I’m going to put in an unsolicited spiel here for Airbnb. I have used it a few times this semester and I adore it. It’s really nice to have more of a “home” to go back to at the end of the day (or the middle for siesta even when you’re not in Spain sorry not sorry) for the same price as a low-mid end hotel or private hostel room. In Madrid, it meant we could order pizza one night and watch tv shows and relax rather than going out once again or eating on the floor of a hotel room. It meant I could come and go as I pleased without worrying about strict hostel staff or hotel cleaning crews etc. Anyway. Airbnb forever.
As it was so close, of course another visit to Plaza Mayor was in order.
We went back one morning for some San Ginés churros of course.
We made the long-awaited visit to the Prado but boo, unlike the Thyssen, no pictures were allowed so here’s the only one I managed to sneak in of a random Roman statue:
We took a lot of random pictures (usually solicited by me). This one is my favorite of the lot.
We also went to the Retiro, this time to take part in the traditional “couples” activity of rowing on the lake/pond. Yes, I made him row.
And finally, we went to the Templo de Debod, an Egyptian temple gifted to the Spanish government in the 1960s by Egypt. But Ale tells me apparently there’s actually another temple that was given to the U.S. at the same time and the one to Spain was just a red herring to confuse the Russians or something? It’s very weird and politically melodramatic but interesting.
We also wandered around a lot, ate the aforementioned pizza, saw the new Pixar “Inside Out” movie (SO CUTE HIGHLY RECOMMEND) and spent some really good quality time together. Yes, I cried a lot (sorry Ale), but mostly we spent a very happy few days together and I enjoyed soaking up the last of the Spanish sun I’ll see for awhile.
I would, at this time, like to give a huge shout-out to everyone who is in a long-term, long-distance relationship. Like people going to school in different states, military couples, etc….MAD PROPS. Also shout-out to everyone who was in a long-distance relationship pre-internet/wifi. It’s difficult enough not being able to talk to him a lot of the time because time zones are dumb. I can’t imagine having to do this with only letters and having to coordinate phone calls and paying for phone calls etc etc etc.
Anywaaaaaaay. Madrid was great both times I got to visit. It’s a beautiful city and much cleaner and smaller than I expected from a capital (definitely no NYC or London but in a good way). Go visit if you get the chance!