May Day was on a Saturday this year and, it being a weekend, everyone was in a holiday mood. The weather was great, blue skies and few clouds. We started the day off as usual with café con leche and toasted ciabatta bread. I always take mine with butter and marmalade but Anil decided to try having his the Spanish way, with olive oil and tomato puree. He loved it.
We set off on the metro to show Adia another part of Madrid that we had discovered the previous fall. We got off on the stop for the La Latina neighbourhood, and within moments we could feel the energy of the crowds out enjoying the spring weather. We walked for hours and by early evening we found ourselves on a narrow street lined with pubs and bars. I got a kick out of the one named ‘Latina Turner’ and looked around for another one across the street that might have been named ‘Ike A Rumba’.
It was interesting walking with Adia and noticing how the young Spanish men admired her good looks, her slim figure, and especially her height. At one point, two very inebriated young men noticed me taking photos along the street. They leaned out of a window and encouraged me to take a picture of them. I was only too happy to oblige. The fellow with the mojito was obviously four-sheets-to-the-wind, his eyes were closed and he was hanging on to his friend for balance.
We had only a couple more days together before we were due to fly back to Canada and Adia would leave to spend a few days in Berlin visiting friends, then on to New York to see Puneet, Komal and Anya before getting home to Victoria where Geoff and Maizie were waiting patiently for her return. We decided to spend one more day travelling outside of Madrid, this time to Segovia, and then treat ourselves to some special pampering at a Turkish bath on our last day in Spain.
With that in mind, we stopped by the Banos Arab and booked a time for the three of us to get a soak, a scrub and a massage. To our surprise and delight, it turned out they had a special that included a lunch afterwards. I think most tourists like to come in the evenings and they wanted to encourage more people to come earlier in the day.
It was dark by now and we were getting hungry from all the walking we had done. We decided to head back to a little lane not far from Plaza de Sol where we had discovered a delightful restaurant that made the most delicious goat cheese salad and an appetizer big enough to be called an entrée. The chef started with a thick slice of ciabatta bread, covered it with almost equally thick layer of Brie cheese and topped it off with a pile, or should I say mountain, of caramelized onions.
As we had done on our previous visit, we washed it all down with glasses of sangria. Did you know that the word ‘sangria’ means ‘bleeding’ in Spanish? To our surprise, there were some menus translated into English that used this literal translation. It was almost enough to put one off ordering a pitcher, but we managed to grin and swallow (I mean bear) it.
We didn’t stay out to late that evening though it was mild and the energy from the other Madrilenos was infectious. We had a big day ahead of us, navigating our way out of the city and on to Segovia, though it was really getting back into Madrid that had proven so difficult each time we returned. We were determined not to miss Exit 9 again; this time we were sure we wouldn’t have to drive all the way to the airport in order to find our way back to the hotel yet again.