Day 173

Melting in Madrid.

The heat in Madrid nearly kills the Peugeot. We woke late and had a list of sites to see in Madrid but when we got in the car a warning came up on the dash saying the cars audio would not work because of how hot it is.

Madrid meltdown, we had to turn off the audio to our favourite station.

Madrid meltdown, we had to turn off the audio to our favourite station.

Can’t believe I have been complaining about the heat all over Spain (Summer calls it whinging) but this is ridiculous. It is hot but strangely bearable in the shade because it is not humid. In Australia in this heat with our humidity you would be lucky to survive an hour.

We take off and first stop is the bull ring to have a tour. The Plaza de Toros de Las Ventas has daily tours, which we think will be similar to the Olympic Stadium tour in Athens. We were pretty excited until we got there and there were trucks everywhere around the outside taking away scafolding, dirt and building equipment. We figured out quickly that they were dismantling staging for a motorbike event. Later we found out the Red Bull X Fighters World Tour was on the night before. We went to the entrance and was told no tourists. We asked about tomorrow and was told no.

So we just walked around the outside and swung on bulls horns and took some photos.

Winter tackling a wall mounted bull outside Las Ventas, Madrid.

Winter tackling a wall mounted bull outside Las Ventas, Madrid.

This was fun for a minute but there was nothing else to do.

Autumn tackling the bull this time. The horns are well worn by others doing this as well.

Autumn tackling the bull this time. The horns are well worn by others doing this as well.

This is what the wall looks like without people hanging off it.

3D mural of bulls outside Las Ventas bull ring in Madrid.

3D mural of bulls outside Las Ventas bull ring in Madrid.

We were disappointed we couldn’t get in. We then jumped in the car and went to the next destination on our list, the Museo Nacional del Prado. Summer researched that this is the Spanish version of the Louvre in Paris.

The only photo you can take of the Museo Nacional del Prado.

The only photo you can take of the Museo Nacional del Prado.

You can’t take photos in the Museum so I got this one outside and then payed $28 Euro ($40 AUD) for Summer and I while the girls got in for free. It was so good to get out of the heat, am I whinging again?

First thing we did was get a map. We knew there were some famous paintings in there and wanted to see them all. The three girls really got into it and would stand for ages looking at the paintings and talking about them. But all I could think about was the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Raphael, Michelangelo and Leonardo were there but no Donatello.

We spent 3 hours looking at the work in there and when the kids started to complain of hunger pains we realised it was 1830 and raced through the last paintings and got back to the car 1900. We headed back to our little place via the main street of downtown Madrid. It was packed with tourists and locals. We saw so many Ronaldo photos it wasn’t funny just like the many Messi jerseys in Barcelona.

Winter took this shot out the window while driving of the Palacio de Cibeles in Madrid, not bad.

Winter took this shot out the window while driving of the Palacio de Cibeles in Madrid, not bad.

I cooked a quick dinner and the girls cleaned up and rested. We needed to get some money from the ATM and water before taking off tomorrow to our next destination and the girls did not want to go out again. So Summer and I went for a walk to the closest ATM and supermarket. Got the money but the shop was shut. So we tried the next place and it was shut. We didn’t want to go too far and headed back but then we saw a tapas bar open with only a few people in it and stopped in to get a beer while we figured out where the local shop was.

We asked for two beers and the guy asked his wife if he should serve us. It was a little weird and we thought we should just go but then he poured them and Summer asked, in her attempt at Spanish, if they were having a private party. Yes they were. But the guy explained, in Spanish, that this was a Saturday that they are closed and only have friends over for the night. This is what Summer thinks he said anyway. The next thing his wife comes out of the kitchen and offers us some oven fresh tapas. It was delicious. The man then offers Summer some ‘tinto verano‘ (sangria) on tap and it was so nice I don’t think it touched the sides and Summer was onto her second.

We didn’t stay longer because we felt we were crashing their party a little bit and the girls were back waiting for us. We asked to pay and the guy turns around and tells us ‘nada, buenos noches’ nothing have a good night. We couldn’t believe it but left pretty happy about our find. We then found a shop on the next corner and got what we needed. The shop keeper was Chinese and from Beijing and so we had a broken Spanglish conversation with him. Such a funny night.

When we got back, the girls had had a shower and were chilling out in the AC watching Spanish cartoons. They didn’t think we were too long and so we were relieved. Can’t wait to get to our next destination on the coast out of the dry heat. We have booked two weeks on a farm in Southern Spain just in time for the girls to begin their online school work.

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