We are in Madrid during the height of the bicentennial celebrations of the city. Concert stages have been erected in various plazas and we had the chance to listen to rehearsals at Plaza Mayor while dining at an outdoor cafe. There are people everywhere especially at Puerta del Sol where it´s nearly impossible to get around without running into someone. There´s music in the air courtesy of street performers. We´ve listened to mariachi bands and Peruvian groups as well as classical violinists. We´ve stopped to watch human statues that suddenly move when you place money into their pots. A sexy lady will sway her hips and raise her skirt when she receives a little dinero and a cowboy all in black will swing his gun for the ladies. We´ve enjoyed the tapas bars with the array of hors d´ouevres like chorizo, queso de manchego, oliva, croquetas de jamon, torta de patatas and so much more, washed down with sangria or vino dulce while the men drink draft beer. We ate the best paella at La Barraca in Madrid, thanks to Carmel and Miguel, and roasted suckling pig at Meson del Candido in Segovia. Only a few days in Madrid and my companions are already discerning enthusiasts of pastries from La Mallorquina and café natural from Café y Te.
There are still many things to see but we´ll have to set those aside for now because we are enjoying the sounds and flavors of Madrid. Hasta luego.