Wed – Dec 22 (I think. . .)
The days are already starting to blur. I think the jet-lag is beginning to wear off, but I still feel like we are in a fog. A good fog, but a fog nevertheless.
Janel’s last day of work is today so we were on our own this morning. Rich and I awoke around 9 and decided to find the pastelleria that we had passed in our neighborhood to bring back some goodies for breakfast. We weren’t exactly sure where we had seen it so we asked out “doorman” on the way out. He looked a bit puzzled but told us that it was “derecho” (to the right). We headed out the door all bundled up for our rainy walk. As it turns out we took about 5 steps to the right and there it was!
We munched for awhile and then got Johnny from his deep sleep. Today we had planned to visit the modern art museum – Museo de Reina Sofia. It was raining and cold outside so we opted to take the metro. It was easy and quick. Rich was able to navigate directly to the museum with no problem.
Reina Sofia is a rather large building with 4 stories of different eras of modern art. We especially enjoyed the Picasso’s and the Dali work. Rich was a fan of Miro. We strolled through most of the building just taking in a small fraction of what was offered.
We were feeling kind of peckish and were very happy when Janel called to say she was finished with work. We caught up with her and stumbled upon a great place for lunch – El Burgo del Lobo (or something like that). It had been recommended to Janel by one of here friends. We had a typical Spanish lunch. Janel, Rich and John opted for the Menu del dia – Cocido (chicken-y soup with fideos), Cociodo Completo (a large platter of the “stuff” that was cooked in the broth – chicken leg, morcia, chorizo, garbanzos, etc) and postre (chocolate tarte). I had a platter with fried egg, black beans, rice, avocado and corn. We enjoyed the comfort food tremendously.
After lunch it was, of course, siesta time. I zonked for about an hour while Rich slaved over the previous blog post. Janel siesta’d at her place. We finally gathered again at our apartment (which, by the way, is the ONLY way to stay) and made our evening plans.
Since we are going to be out early tomorrow (road trip day) we are going to take it easy tonight and try to turn in early – not an easy feat in Spain. We ducked out into the rain and started wandering. Janel’s knowledge of how to get around the city simply astounds me. She is obviously very comfortable anywhere and finds her way from here to there with great ease.
We ended up at the Plaza Mayor area to see the Christmas lights. We also walked to the Plaza Sol to see the huge Christmas tree there. This season is especially beautiful in the city.
When it was time to find a nibble, we went back to our neighborhood – La Latina. I had researched and found a couple of tapas bars that sounded interesting to me. However, I was very torn about not going back to Siete where we went two nights ago (I loved that place!). But – Janel wanted to try somewhere new so off we went to Bar Tempranillo. This was, again a small, packed tapas bar that was busily serving the nightime crowd. Once again, Janel proved her expertise at being a “local” and quickly ordered 2 cavas and a glass of red wine for Rich. We then studied the menu and decided upon a dish with shrimp and other various seafood items for us to share.
The MO is to have a drink and a tapa at one place and move on to another. Tonight we know we will only go to a couple of places so we gather ourselves and move on to Txirimir. Great place. We like it even better. The place is jammed, but somehow Janel gets the eye (and a wink) of the bartender. She orders 2 canas (beers) and 1 cava (for me) and also an order of Ravioli with mushrooms and truffles. I remark that I don’t know how the bartender will know where we are when the food is ready, but he does and we dig in.
We watch the futbol (soccer) game on tv and enjoy our nibbles and drinks. The night is waning and we must get some sleep.
We hoof it home, Janel heads back out to the metro and another day has come and gone. These posts don’t even begin to tell how much we are loving it here. We love the pace, we love the city life, we love the food culture, and especially we love being all four of us together.