Wednesday, March 15, 1989

Beware the Ides of March ...

Woke up bright and early again, and Viv stopped by so that we could make our way again to the little bakery across the road for an inexpensive breakfast. We traveled by Metro back to the Residencia and as they all left for their lessons, I remained behind once again on Viv's bed, this time to write some postcards to friends at Millersville.

When I finished writing post cards, I started writing "A Day in the Life" for Michele back home. I thought it'd be a nice way to give her a snapshot of what a typical day is like living in Hull. I was in the process of writing this letter when everyone returned for lunch, which was pretty good if you like fish.

Following lunch, Angie, Raquel and others continued to hunt for a new flat... and some of the French students weren't shy about it at all. They were looking at places in the paper right in front of the owners of the Residencia... the owner is a throwback from the Franco Era, very stern and disciplined. Also, apparently, rather cheap and a lover of fish.

After going to the bank, Viv and I took the Metro to El Retiro (pictured above), a large park located right in the center of Madrid. It was a beautiful day and we were able to take off our jackets and enjoy the sun, the trees, and everything about the place. My only complaint was the large concrete road that cuts right through the center of the park. In Retiro you can rent boats, enjoy an outdoor lunch, even have gypsies read you your future, or as we did, lay in the sun and relax for awhile.

There's also an art museum in the center of the park, but we didn't go in, because foreigners are required to pay admission (Spaniards are not). Strange. (Pictured below is the building we did not enter.)

After a relaxing afternoon in the park, we ventured back out into Madrid and took in other sights. We marvelled at many of the buildings and stopped at one of the dirtiest cafeterias I've ever been in. I've been told that in Madrid, cleanliness is not next to godliness.

We weren't exactly sure where we were at this point, until we happened to stumble upon Gran Via. So we returned to my room for a bit before returning via Metro to the Residencia for dinner.

After the meal I caught a few minutes of an episode of "ALF" dubbed in Spanish. That was an interesting experience. He's quite popular here, but it looked strange to me being dubbed. From what I saw, I wasn't able to identify what episode it was. Also interesting were some of the commercials. Apparently, nudity is OK to sell products on prime time television in Spain.

Later that evening, Viv and I left once more for Gran Via, and I got an early bed tonight.

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