Sunday 21 July 2013
We had to collect our luggage from our former host, so we decided to combine the journey with a return visit to the El Rastro markets. We arrived early, before the crowds, and located the jewellery stall that had impressed Susan so much on our first visit to Madrid. After we had purchased some gifts, we wandered aimlessly about. Susan rifled through bargain second-hand clothes whilst I sheltered from the heat in the shadows of nearby buildings. Susan was particularly captivated by a rambling stall under a tree that sold an assortment of junk including numerous second-hand books. She purchased a handful of tiny paperbacks on a variety of unlikely topics with commercial art covers printed in lurid colours. It’s usually me that can’t stay away from the books.
As the crowd began to peak, my agoraphobia began to get the better of me, so we headed off to collect our surplus luggage from Jose’s apartment. Afterwards we drifted into Café La Latina and had some typical Spanish junk food for lunch, which included ham and eggs on chips. Having consumed far too many carbohydrates, we returned to the apartment in the Malasaña district for a long siesta.
We emerged back onto the streets late in the evening for dinner. There was Mexican restaurant nearby, and we were keen to sample some of the treats on offer. Suz ordered a Margarita and was delighted to be served one that rated a respectable seven out of ten. We both blissed out on some classic Mexican dishes and reminisced about our travels in Mexico back in 1987. After a few excellent Mexican beers and another decent Margarita, we rode home on a couple of metaphorical ponies, with the cheerful strains of ranchero ringing in our ears.