Sunday, August 4, 2013

" Siempre Madrid "

It has always been in my heart of hearts to visit Madrid
and we finally did last winter, despite the cold.
Next to Paris,
I am sans doute in love with Spain's language and culture,
can't explain why, blame it for watching much of Almodovar's films and relying on subtitles or poor dubbing.
I even studied Spanish many moons ago,(okay, not so long ago) though I hardly used it at all.
Good thing all those conjugations and verbs are still intact, as it became useful for us
despite my err... broken and choppy Spanish phrases. ^0^

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In a nutshell, Madrid is a city that never sleeps, almost the exact equivalent of NYC.
It's chaotic, boisterous and bursting with life.
There's a story in every structure, a mixed of old and new.
A haven for shopaholics and
The city's thriving foodie scene will make you crave for more.

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But it has its 'highs' and 'lows', on one hand, the pretty scenarios are all lined up in a row.
you have the majestic Metropolis along Gran Via, the stunning Plaza de Oriente where Palacio Real is located,
and the idyllic Retiro Park just to name a few.

Retiro Park
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Palacio Real
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the debod temple
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on the other, the back streets can be a bit sketchy at night,
beggars abound, a handful of prostitutes and "carteristas" (pickpockets) stay close around the area.
In fact, we're warned more than once by local Madrileños to be wary of our belongings esp.our cameras. ^0^

But it's generally safe in this city, so nothing to worry about.

Our hotel is in the Callao area, near Gran Via.

- A 15-20 minute walk to "El Museo de arte Thyssen-Bornemisza", or The Debod temple.
- A minute to get into the Metro ( Sto. Domingo station or Callao station ).
- A stroll to the famous Puerta del Sol and El Corte Ingles.
- Tons of comida rapida (fast food) chains, high-end restos, cool tapas and bars.

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During the day,
the street is quiet,
shops are still closed,
delivery trucks are parked,
and maybe, just maybe,
you'd be lucky to stumble a reporter from a news channel in RTVE.
I don't know her name but I'm sure she's one of the reporters from Comando Actualidad.
It's one of the best informative / documentary series that I look forward to if you want to learn more about Spain.

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The iconic Cines Callao should be your topic marker,
also there's a nice Schweppes edifice opposite to it.
I'm not sure of its name, so I wish they will not change this ad-sign for awhile.
We seriously wished we had more days to spend,
surely, I miss Madrid in a heartbeat.

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note: this post has been in my draft list for awhile now and every time I would start a paragraph,
I couldn't move on to the next.
That's how it is when you stop blogging,
my mind isn't cooperating...tsk,tsk.. :(