Monday, May 16, 2005

Last bit of the trip

The train from Barcelona to Madrid was good. The cabin was tiny but private, with 2 little bunkbeds, and tiny collapsable stairs to get to the top bunk. The train left at 11:30 pm and arrived at 7:30 am, which made for a brief night of sleep, but we made up for it with a siesta later.

The metro in Madrid was also fast, clean, efficient. We got to our hotel a little after 8, planning to just dump our bags until later, but our room was ready, so
they gave it to us. The room was terrific, except for one small detail -- despite this being our "second honeymoon," we had twin beds everywhere we went - on the boat, in Barcelona, and now in Madrid! Very Lucy and Ricky. Oh well. We did have a balcony that overlooked Plaza del Sol, a huge bedroom, and a bathroom that was all marble, with a huge tub, bidet, and towel warming rack.

We went down to the cafe and ordered breakfast, getting something I'd never eat at home - churros dipped in warm, liquidy chocolate pudding. Very rich and yummy.

We wandered over to the Royal Palace (Spain's equivalent to Versailles), which was sumptiously overdecorated in typical Rococo abundance. Every ceiling had a majestic fresco,
there were tapestries, Chinese urns, marble statues, and antique clocks in every room, which brought sounds from the 18th century to our ears every time they chimed. The current King and Queen still use the throne room to greet guests before the large dinners they throw about 12 times a year, at a banquet table that must seat over 200.

Afterwards, we stopped in Plaza de Mejor, which Anthony recognized from the drawings his parents used to hang in their living room when he was growing up. It was another beautiful day, and I said to Anthony, "Can you believe we're in Madrid, your birthplace?"

After resting, we walked around and had another great tapas dinner, sitting in Plaza Santa Anna, at a tiny wine bar that spilled out to the sidewalk and over the street into the square. We had great cheeses and tried delicious Jamon Iberico, the ham made from pigs that are allowed to roam freely and eat nothing but acorns. It was a beautiful night, and we couldn't believe it was the end of our wonderful trip, but we were anxious to get home and see our kids. We really could've used one more day in Madrid, but it was good to have an entire day with Anna and Colin before I had to go back to work.


messymama said...

Thanks for the wrap-up. That breakfast of churros with chocolate sounds sinfully good. And you have to post the picture of the huge dining table. It really is amazingly long. And, everyone, Jenniifer's face looks really good despite the ordreal. On Sunday (at the time of the drive-by breading) the bruises were already fading and the swelling of her lip had gone way down. You should post before & after pix. DO you get some kind of medal or something, for injuries sustained in the line of duty?

Grandad said...

Wow, here in Gibraltar and learned about your troubles with the dog. Glad your trip was good, it sounds like you had a great time.
Happy B'day to you, me, and Colin.....