Friday, April 04, 2008
a most excellent host
I had the privilege of spending the first half of my easter holiday in sunny sunny Madrid with my big brother. He summed up pretty well here what we did in the five days I spent there. We had fun reminiscing about our childhood and the way we used to play monopoly in a manner that meant nobody ever one, due to Mum's indifference / dislike / missing gene (???) with regard to winning and competition. Ah the days when we used to fight over 'doggy-doggy-woof-woof' - the name we gave to the metal dog that was one of the monopoly pieces. In our reminiscing it was interesting to see the different things we both remembered. The odour (not unpleasant at all) of the stairwell leading up to John's apartment reminded me of the house we stayed in in the Netherlands all those many moons ago.
It was great to meet some of John's lovely friends, and see the sights, sounds and smells of another country. It's been a long time since I've been somewhere where I have absolutely no idea what people are saying. The last time I went abroad, was my last trip to Uganda, and 95% of people speak very good English. It was also funny to be in Europe yet feel very, very white, and very very English. There are very few fair haired freckly people in Madrid who wear flipflops in Spring. I don't think I've ever been so aware of dozens of people staring at my feet. I felt slightly silly as I sat in the blazing sun in the park, slapping on suncream wearing summer clothes, whilst the Madrileno's walked around with winter coats and scarves on!! It's all good fun, seeing how different cultures can be.
John was a wonderful host and did a fine job of showing me some of the city and educating me, and ordering my food! Thanks again John, you're a legend.