I’m in Spain as I type this: Madrid to be specific. My husband and I are on a month vacation to Europe. We left the US on my 62nd birthday and I spent my birthday doing two of Doc’s all time favorite things: sitting in first class lounges and flying. He thought he’d died & gone to heaven. I had no illusions: this was NOT heaven.
We met up in Madrid with Ronny, a dear friend from Ghent & his partner from New York, NY, USA. How many bi-continental couples do YOU know????
We are starting our month attending Madrid Pride, one of Europe’s largest & wildest Pride events with about 2 million attendees. Yesterday, we attended the Pride Parade down on Calle Gran Via. I think more than 2 million came out for the parade. The parade began at 6PM and was not over until well after midnight. Madrid KNOWS how to party! And party we did!
But I am getting ahead of myself.
We arrived three days before the Pride Parade & met up with Ronny at the airport. Hernan arrived two days later from New York City.
Ronny showed Doc & me the sights of Madrid from his point of view. We visited his favorite haunts and squares. We had a great time. In addition to learning that “Happy Hour” begins at 11AM in Madrid AND that lunch is around 4 PM with dinner on the far horizon of 10PM, I discovered the necessity of the siesta.
What I really want to talk about in this blog is our discovery of the Mercado de San Miguel. We made a point to be there for our mid day meal three days running. The Mercado is an old market place that’s been rehabbed into a trendy food court. Think of a tapas bar with separate food stations. The place is not huge but it is large: seven isles of delicious. There is everything from specialty olives to Kobe steak and caviar to sardines.
Three days running, we met up at Mercado de San Miguel, securing a table and fanning out assembling our feast. The first day, we had an incredible tapas meal of olives, pork sausages, squid, a plate of 10 different cheeses and wine.
On day two, we limited ourselves to olives, grilled steak, caviar and wine. Would “limited” be the correct word? It was an incredible meal. Decadent & delicious
Hernan arrived from New York and the four of us met up at the Mercado for another incredible meal. Again, we had wine, olives and sausages. We added the 10 cheeses and a mushroom dish. We experimented again with the fish. It was a successful, delicious experiment! We added a second bottle of wine to “clean up”.
After these meals, we would either venture into the “ghetto” for the evening or return our hotel for a siesta. We are on day 5 in Madrid… I opt for the siesta.
As incredible as our tapas lunches have been at the Mercado, they pale in comparison to our dinners!
Will you believe me if I tell you I’m watching what I eat?
As always, THANK you for listening,
Jerry L. Hanson