Monday, February 28, 2011

"Now let's walk over here so I can talk about 2000 years of Spanish history! YAY"!!!

Puerta de Alcalá (Thanks Nieves R!)

One of the best parts about being in Europe is that all the cities are close together so it makes it easy to take a mini-vacation!
Since we had a 4-day weekend, we decided to make the most of it and head up to Madrid. It was super fun, super beautiful, and so much to do that we barely had anytime for sleep.

Let me start off by saying there was a crazy lady staying in our Hostel. She was about mid 50's with long gray hair. I get creeped out by old people staying in hostels, mainly becasue I think there had to be something wrong with you if you're that old staying in a youth hostel.

When we first got there she was sitting on her bed on her computer. A few hours later, she was in the same spot. Then when Lauren and I got back from dinner at about 11 p.m. she was still there! She didn't acknowledge our presence or say anything, until she started reading out loud what she was working on all day. Basically she believes that Obama and Biden have been murdered and the FBI has been covering it up for seven months. Then she started talking about wire taps, sutras, terrorist attacks and a JFK conspiracy. I remember distinctly hearing her say that she had talked to the head of the FBI yesterday about the conspiracy too. Lauren was able to get a glimpse at her computer and she has the web-cam covered up. I guess she was afraid they were "watching her." I was seriously afraid she was gonna kill me in my sleep.
Saturday was our full day of sightseeing. We went on a Sandeman’s free tour, which was fun and our tour was really funny and made things interesting.  His name was Ian from Pennsylvania and made us cheer a lot. The tour was a little more than three hours, but we saw a lot of cool places and Ian would always tell a fun story to go along with it.
“Now we’re gonna walk aver here and talk about a much happier topic, suicide! Every raise you hands and say YAY!!!!!”
We got to see a lot of the city and we met some cool people. There was Magdaline from Germany, and another guy, JT, who we found out was staying at out hostel.
We stopped at the Museo de Jamon for a break on the tour and got lunch. Let me just say I have new love for Spanish ham. Everyone who knows me well knows that I don’t like most pig products, but the Spanish know how to cure some good ham! It was super cheap too! A sandwich, drink and an apple was only 2 euros! Best. deal. Yet.
The Royal Palace

On the second half we saw the Royal Palace and the Cathedral. Ian also showed us the best place to get churros and chocolate Chocolateria San Gines, which Lauren and I took advantage of later that day. 

I like these churros better than the first ones we had because they were thinner and crunchier. They have a lot of pictures of famous people like to come here, like Penelope Cruz and a bunch of people that I didn’t recognize.

After the tour we went back to the hostel to get some R&R before venturing out into the unknown. We went to the park, Buen Retiro, which was something out of Alice in Wonderland! All the trees and bushes are trimmed perfectly (that’s what she said) and there are a lot of cool looking modern art sculptures, statues, fountains and a lake! We walked toward the pond and ran into some guys who were staying at the hostel with us and hung out with them for a while. Once it got dark we went to the hostel together.
We also took the time to continue the quest for the Perfect Paella! The girl working at the hostel recommended a place that has really great Spanish food. The only problem was that she forgot what it was called.
“If you turn right off of Sol, the take an immediate right, it’s right there. It’s right next to an Irish Pub, but that place isn’t really good. I always forget the name and I always tell people to go there.”
So with our bad direction we headed out and of course in typical fashion, we chose the wrong place the first night. So we went back the next night, and lemme tell you, it was worth it!

We finally learned that the place was called El Rocio and the paella was the best I’ve had so far. It was super huge and full of mussels, shrimp, baby crabs and squid! The flavor wasn’t too fishy and the red peppers and tomatoes were a good compliment. There more than me Lauren could handle. I felt like I should principle eat because it was so delicious, but I knew if I did I wold go into a food coma and I'd be too tired to go out. With Sangria and bread, it was the epitome of the perfect Spanish meal. I give it an 11 out of 10!
That night we decided we wanted to go to this club we had heard about, Kapital or I like to say, seven-stories of fun! Lauren and I have been talking about this place for months and we knew we couldn’t pass this up.
Unfortunately, this was the most expensive thing we had done so far. It was twenty dollars each to get in and that only included one drink, but I figured it was worth it because we were only going once, but it didn’t disappoint. Each floor has a different theme and type of music that they play; my favorites were the ground floor, third floor and fifth floor. They had hot dancers and gymnastic performances and if you’re drunk enough, karaoke. It was definitely the biggest club I’ve ever been to!

On another side-not, this really is a small world. Turns out some of the guy staying in our hostel were also studying in Granada:

Blond Guy: "Tell my friends that they need to go to Kapital."
Me: It's pretty sweet, I think seven stories is worth the price.
Other ginger looking guy: Yeah but twenty Euros worth?
Me: Well I figure it's worth it for one time, we get in free everywhere in Granada so...
Blond Guy: Wait, you guys are studying in Granada, so are we!
*five minutes later when his friends leave the room*
Blond Guy: Do you wanna go smoke a bowl with us.
Lauren and I: Umm... I think we're okay, but thanks!
Needless to say we go t three hours of sleep before we had to check out and get back on the bus. It’s definitely an amazing place and there’s so much to do that sometime in my life I have to go again to focus on other things like El Prado and Reina Sofia.
Palabra del día: so this is a phrase, not a word, which I learned from my new friend Bryce. Asco de vida, which is the Spanish version of FML!

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  1. IDK what that thing is but it looks like butt hole and it has a whole lemon in it so it looks like butt hole

  2. You're such a nice brother... I should be mad at you but I'm not because you took the time to read my blog lol

  3. Madrid!! I studied there for a month in the summer and I loved my time there. Reading your entry reminded me of my wonderful memories there; thanks for posting :)

  4. Stopping by to say you have a blog award waiting at


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