Last Day in Madrid

Today – Thursday 6 – we have said our farewells to Madrid. We have done lots of washing so we can start off clean as we begin to travel around Spain. We have also finalised our blogs so we start anew. We have decided we will take a slightly different approach from now, and write a blog for each city – rather than each day. We are going to be on the move with sometimes only 2 days in a place, so will want to maximise our time ‘out there’, not sitting documenting our adventures. It will still aim at being a diary of our trip which we will value – and hope you will enjoy.

So we set off around midday and did a big circuit, passing in Plaza del Sol the beautiful sculpture of the Emblem of Madrid (today’s feature image) – the Standing Bear eating from a strawberry tree – which dates back to 1222 AD.

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Gardens and History

We started today – Tuesday 4 – by going to the Post Office with 8kg of our winter gear. It will make a huge difference as we get closer to travelling by train around Spain. We just have to hope that the weather doesn’t get cold but even now we both have several layers we can wear, and we find our wind jackets are great if it’s a little bit cold at the beginning of the day.  Postage achieved, we went looking for gardens and flowers.

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The Prado

Nothing else to talk about today – Monday 3 – as we spent all day at the Prado. Fortunately we had bought our tickets online before leaving Oz. We arrived before the gallery opened and already the queue was very long. It probably would have taken an hour or so to get in, but we walked straight in, stowed our bag, collected audios and were under way by 10.10.

As indicated by our feature image today – part of the floor plan brochure – the collection is huge. At its core is the Royal Collection of mainly 16th and 17th century paintings which have been transferred from palaces around Madrid, and further afield such as Toledo and Seville.

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Madrid on a Sunday

We think we spent today, Sunday 2, in many ways like the Madrilenos do. To start off, we woke at 9.30am.  Now that’s not quite the same. You see very little action around Madrid at the weekend before midday.  Anyway late for us.

This blog may not be of great interest – except for us as a reminder of what we did. The photos will be the best bit for you.   Our feature photo today is a 30x20cms brass plaque in the pavement, we think advertising a service – like gas.  It is so beautiful and intricate that we had to photograph it.  It would make a lovely rubbing.

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Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza

Oh my goodness, it’s Saturday and it’s April Fools Day! A special memory of Marg Francis whose birthday was today.

After Al had done a bit more sorting out of our Aldi Talk SIM card, we were off to another terrific museum, about a 20 minute walk. We had two long sessions there. First from 12 till 2, then lunch, and another session from 3.30 to 7pm.

No, we are not in Hungary.  This Museum consists of paintings collected by the Thyssen-Bornemisza family and acquired by the Spanish state in 1993. The art covers late 13th century to the 1980s. The gallery was a former palace. So as you can imagine, it has a bit of everything. Sad to say, we didn’t manage this one as an over-65 freebie!

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Marvellous Madrid

To Spain

Our flight on Thursday 30 with Air Iberia was very straight forward. Only 50 minutes door to door by train to the Berlin airport. Our flight was a cheapie so, like our cheapies in Oz, you bought your food. They had a good pasta carbonara in a cup which kept us going for 3.50 euro. It was beautiful flying over the Italian Alps and the Pyrenees, both very craggy, and still heavily covered in snow.

From Madrid railway station we took a train – 20 minutes, then a short bus ride – and got to our apartment before 6pm. The guy from Way to Stay – a very nice fellow –  was there to let us in. Mateo, call me Mat or Mathew, he said.

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