“Hostel finito, hostel finito!” I opened my eyes to see a short stocky spanish woman kicking me out of my hostel room at 9am. What she was saying exactly, or how she had gotten into my room, I wasn’t sure of, but I could tell from her yelling and body language I was supposed to leave. If I dated a spanish girl, this is how I imagine her mother would act when she found me with her daughter in the morning. Still groggy and confused, and mildly hungover from the night before, I packed my things and went to Cat’s hostel to check in and drop my stuff off.
I couldn’t move into my room until 2 so I wandered Madrid and found myself in Retiro Park, Madrid’s equivalent of Central Park. The park is massive containing its own bike paths, roads, fountains, monuments, and pond complete with paddle boats. I walked through the park for a bit taking pictures and relaxing in the open air. After an afternoon of enjoyably doing nothing, I returned to the hostel for a shower and siesta.
Post siesta, I wake to a girl unpacking her stuff on the bunkbed next to mine. We start talking, turns out she’s a hairdresser from Scotland, named Fiona, traveling Europe on a short vacation. Her and I spent the day walking around Madrid. We walk to the Prado, another of Madrid’s famous art museums, Retiro Park again, and Centro Centro, a place I still don’t understand. Its a giant building with Roman columns, glass walkways, and nothing really inside it. Apart from several giant black and white photographs and several computers of the first floor, the building was empty. Perplexed, Fiona and I left the building and got some dinner on our way to the hostel.
Back at the hostel we met up with Susie and Mildred, a New Yorker I’d met the night before on the pubcrawl. None of us were up for the craziness last night’s pubcrawl had entailed and went to a bar for a few drinks and a more relaxed night. Nature thought otherwise. Ten minutes into our walk it starts to pour and the subways are no longer running. We seek refuge under the awning of a cafe and flag down a cab back to the hostel.