2017Jan05-06 Christmas in Madrid

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The ride was misty and 4degC, as I left Burgos.
The cold continued until the hills, halfway to Madrid. Then the sun came out and the temperature climbed to 15degC 🙂
Temperature dropped to 11degC as I entered Madrid. And my unbelieving eyes took in the horror of horrors, a traffic jam! Been so long, I had forgotten what they are like.
Got off the ring road and ran the back roads. If this had been Paris I would have run the white line. But some Madrid drivers are grumpy, and will block you.

Had booked a nice hotel.
Showed me where I could find a bike wash (for the salt) and a Ukrainian church.
Lesson learned, I parked the bike underground, so it would not freeze up.
Here is a plug for Hugo Bikes who washed the bike for me 🙂 Dunno when the photo for their Central location was taken. Way more traffic in front of the store then in the photo posted on their site, when I looked to confirm directions. hahaha

Thursday evening was a stroll to recce the church and see some of the downtown.
Ended up at the concert and Christmas parade. Yes! Civilization! A country that remembers there are 12 days of Christmas. Unlike North America where both physically and metophorically Christmas is tossed out on Boxing Day.
Back to the parade.
The floats were awesome. Lots of lights and different scenes to those I have ever seen.
My admiration went to the trapeze artist. Suspended by a collective of huge balloons whilst being towed by a truck. That must deserve a medal for bravery! A puff of wind at the wrong time could cause all sorts of problems. Like I said. One brave trapeze artist.

Today, Friday, is Little Christmas, and a holiday. Hence all the festivities last night.

Took the subway downtown and wandered over to the Prado Museum. Hope was to have lunch in the cafeteria and move on. However you have to pay the 15Euro entrance fee to eat there. Not that I am cheap, but it is the principle. And after you have seen a few paintings by Goya, Matisse, Da Vinci, etc…. hahaha
And the line-ups! No way Jose!

Strolled over to the Plaza Mayor which looked just like a poorer version of Valladolid🙂

Then over to the King’s house. He was obviously in, based on the security and TV cameras.

Thence onto a bit of Egypt

And back to the hotel.

What about the food?
Been browsing along the way. Staying vegetarian or sushi, till tonight, after church.

So Merry Little Christmas / Epiphany!
And “Khristos Rodivsya” for those celebrating Christmas under the “old” calendar!

Stephen says:


Sarah and I wish you a Merry Xmas and happy New Year.
Sarah says please don’t get your beard frozen though I think the cold is now behind you. Toronto is -16C today – nothing a good brisk walk wont cure – to St Lawerence Market. I hope you go to Granada for some 12th Century architecture (courtesy the Moors)

biker says:

No wonder I am in Spain!

Heading north for Los Penginos Rally 🙂

Carl says:

I know you like that wacky gregorian calendar that says tomorrow is New Years-so happy new year. Made a surgical strike into the city a few days ago. Sweet India has finally moved back to the old location (yay). Minus 25 with the wind chill today, so not good biking weather.

keep well.

Carl says:

So what do I know – apparently you’re celebrating Christmas now, and it is the julian calendar. Oh well – all the best.

biker says:

Not missing the cold 🙂
Nor any excuse to celebrate 😉