Monday, 16 November 2009
Day 7 - Madrid, Spain
I fear this will have to be a rather short post. It has been a fairly uneventful day, and I don't think you really want to read about me laundering my smalls.
Finally left Hungary very early this morning and made the short trip to Ferihegy airport (pronounced ferry-hedge) for the 3 hour flight to Madrid. On landing, the temperature was noticably warmer - like a pleasant spring day in England, and so, glad to be away from the Hungarian autumn, I headed off to my hostel.
Spain was something of a late starter to the tourism industry (though you wouldn't know it now) - the first truly international hotel didn't open until 1864, nearly a hundred years after such establishments began in Paris, London and New York, and even then, the Fonda de Paris was owned by a French family. Before that, European travellers would usually stay at the infamous "Gran Cruz de Malta" typically described by German writer Daniel Moldenhawer as a "filthy and vile inn." Thankfully things have changed; and while my lodgings are small and in something of a dark townhouse, I have wifi - and that's the most important thing!
I walked into town; as usual bypassing the public transport in order to gain my bearings and aimed for the Museum of the Americas - thinking it may give me some ideas about Haiti and Honduras. Before I could get far though, I saw a "Museo de Jamon" - A ham museum!!!! I was only partially disappointed when I found out that it was a Spanish fast-food chain that specialised in cured meat. A plate of ham, some olives and some crusty bread later and I was on my way.
But I had forgotten one thing - in Europe, most museums are closed on Monday. Witness the picture of the American Museum looking particularly shut! So it was back to my hostel, cleaning my clothes and sorting out some admin - hopefully now organised a trip to Bhutan in a couple of weeks - hurrah!
So all in all, a fairly uneventful day - the second in a row. I will ensure some kind of quixotic adventure tomorrow if I have to saddle old Rocinante myself.