Sunday, March 1, 2009


Friday Evening: February 27, 2009

Friday afternoon was busy with meeting new kids from all over the world: India, Japan, Canada and the USA. The Hostel is full tonight and we have all new roommates.

About 6 pm we headed back outside and walked back to the viewing area that we’d looked down on this morning from the Alhambra. Not dark enough for the lights so we continued up through the Albaycin area, very twisting streets of old Granada, towards the hillside Sacromonte area that has Caves inhabited by Gypsies that the kids go to visit. We didn’t go that far as we’d definitely need stronger shoes to get up the hillside where they have dug tunnels that have been made into their homes.

Walked back to Plaza Nueva looking for a grocery store that has eggs for sale; we’ve both got a yen to have some. Finally found a large enough store and after some sign language we were able to purchase six eggs and a very small canned ham that we’ll use for dinner Saturday night. It was nearly dark by that time so we walked back up to see the lights at dusk on the Alhambra; the skies are cloudy so no sun setting on the buildings but the lighting was worth the walk.

Back at the Hostel we continued meeting new kids as we all waited for the common dinner they were cooking in the kitchen in the huge electric wok. Paella: rice, vegetables, mussels, calamari and prawns for four euros each. I’d never tried the mussels or prawns before so that was a new experience and very tasty after the kids showed me how to peel the prawns and get to the meat in the mussel. We also had a wonderful green salad to go with our meal. Mary stayed with the vegetables and rice!

Everyone went up to the dorm right after dinner about 10:30 pm and believe it or not…lights were out by 11 pm. All American students and getting up early on Saturday; it was a quiet night; could still hear the music and talking in the bar downstairs but we’re getting used to that background noise and it stops about midnight.

Saturday, February 28, 2009 Granada

Awake at 7 am with the kids going skiing in the Sierra Nevada Mountains and then back to sleep for an hour before finally getting up just before 9 am. We ate breakfast and then headed out the door to find a church. We’d decided we take our Sunday Missals and find one that it open so that we can do our readings just in case we don’t find an actual Mass somewhere today.

Raining lightly so we put on our rain ponchos and walked very carefully on the wet stones to Iglesia De San Gregorio Betico; a church located just up the street. They seem to have perpetual adoration twenty four hours a day; always nuns in the sanctuary that has a wrought iron wall across to separate it from the rest of the church. We’ve checked out the Internet and it says that there is a 7 pm Mass at the Cathedral tonight…we’ll see.

Right now its noon and Mary is in the kitchen cooking our eggs and ham. We’ll have part of it now and the reheat the rest for dinner tonight. It’s our day of rest as tomorrow we travel back to Madrid. By the way, we really enjoy the notes we’re receiving from many of you in response to our stories. Always nice to open the Internet and find emails to read.

Saturday, February 28, 2009 evening after a rainy day

Had a good day; talked with Jim this afternoon and also daughter Mary who is visiting for the weekend…it was early morning for them. This evening we walked out to the Cathedral in our rain ponchos; it’s a very light rain but enough to get our feet wet. We had decided to pay the fee and stay for 7 pm Mass (per the Internet) but found out that Mass was not until 7:30…too long to wait. They told us where the door is around the other side for entrance into the mass and that it would open at 7 pm. We walked around the church to find the location of the door and it was open.

We walked inside and discovered that there was a Mass being said. Found some seats in the back and then realized that it was a wedding. Everyone was very dressed up but we decided to stay and attend the Mass.

Back at the hostel we had a great story to tell the kids about crashing a Spanish wedding.
I think we’re going to have a wet trip back to Madrid tomorrow.

Sunday, March 01, 2009 On the Road Again

Up early thanks to the kids; the last one stumbled in about 5:30 am. One of the photos shows the pile of clothes they left on the floor during the night between our bunk beds. So by 7 am we had eaten our breakfast and were out the door for the four block walk to Plaza Nueva for the taxi stand and our ride to the bus station; overcast but not raining. We made the 8 am bus with minutes to spare and had a quiet ride for five hours with only one stop. I did manage to take a photo of those Don Quixote windmills that I love during the trip.

We’re back in Madrid and settled into a new room on the first floor (actually second) with six bunk beds and a bathroom only a door away in the hall. We did a load of laundry before heading out to walk, cold and overcast but streets are crowded and very festive. At Puerta del Sol we found clowns and mariachi singers and then walked to look at the Opera House before visiting Mayor Plaza again. Picked up some food at the grocery store for tomorrow and just had a great stroll for over an hour before tucking in for the night. We’re in the common room now on our computers with music videos above our heads and about thirty some people conversing around the room with each other. Yes, we’re the only ones over forty in the room but that’s ok!

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