We had two final days of exploring Madrid before my parents headed back to USA. Unfortunately for me, this was my busiest week of school, since everything was due that Friday. Nevertheless, we were able to spend a lot of quality time together and visit some of my favorite places in the city.
Andrew and my parents spend the first half of the morning shopping and strolling through the streets, while I put the final touches on three of my final four projects. I packed my backpack and a shoulder bag with the twenty-five or so library books that I had accumulated and met up with my family for lunch. Andrew was not feeling well, we think due to his chorizo from the night before, and headed back to my room where he slept for the next six hours. (Obviously he was sick)
My parents and I enjoyed a delicious menu del día on the Plaza Santa Ana before heading to my school. My school is by no means a tourist attraction, but since I spend so much time there I thought it would be nice for them to see the campus. Also I had to turn in a copy of my final project in person and so I figured why not kill two birds with one stone. Dad got the whole view of the campus, since I had forgotten that I had checked out a book from the Law Library, which was on the other side of campus, and he graciously agreed to accompany me to return that book.
That night for dinner, we visited one of my favorite sites for tapas Las Bravas. It was where I went with my class on our excursion through the city of Madrid. I did not know that there was more than one site, and we ended up going to a different site than I had planned. The only difference was that our second Tapa Restaurant was not the one I had originally planned. Andrew really wanted to visit a restaurant called Casa Tony; however, at the moment we did not know the name or exactly how to get there. Instead we visited a small bar/restaurant outside of Calle Toledo. Then we walked back through Plaza Mayor and stopped for chocolate and churros at San Gines a local historic spot for this beloved treat. After filling ourselves with sweets we took the Metro home.
Friday morning my parents and Andrew toured the Palacio Real in Madrid. My parents visited Las Descalzas Reales prior to this trip, which gave them an idea of the building that I will be studying the next year. I believe that they rather enjoyed both excursions as they demonstrated the places that the Spanish royal family inhabited.
I spent the morning at the National Archive on a visit with my class. The head archivist taught us how to use the Archive and how the transformation of the Spanish system over the years affected the placement of documents. Something, that will really come in handy in the years to come. In addition, the entire visit was hands on, allowing us to see, hold and manipulate the documents to which she was referring. One oddity of her archive, as she called it, was a letter written by Lopez de Vega, in which he wrote I write this letter “with my blood for ink…” referring I believe to a letter directed towards the Inquisition. After holding the document, I wrote the whole quote down, but of course in the midst of all of the papers in my room, cannot currently find it. When I do, I will update the blog to reflect the proper quote since I found it fascinating.
We met up for lunch outside the Palace and picked a site recommended by a professor. It was quite and somewhat off the beaten path of the central district, but the food and quantity was amazing. I believe that it was a Catalan themed restaurant. I personally loved the dessert which was a thick cheese with honey drizzled on top.
After lunch, my parents and Andrew wandered through the city. My dad attempted to go to the Reina Sofia; however, he had some difficulty entering during the free hours. I, too, had a slight hiccup with turning in my final paper, which I had been finishing while they were exploring because my images were too large. Finally, I decided to turn in a final version of the text and a copy of the whole paper including the images on Monday since after three hours I could not get the document to attach to the email.
We ate our last meal together in a restaurant recommended by Andrew. He had visited this place before with Conti and was dying to go back. It was a very good meal and it was lovely to be relaxed for once and enjoy the company of my family. We especially liked the after meal drink, which we later learned was not made at the restaurant. We arrived back at my house for the last time and made sure my parents had all of their belongings and shared one last glass of port. Their flight was extremely early the next morning, which meant that this was the time for our farewells. Luckily, we will be seeing one another again in two months time in Prague!! I cannot wait for the adventures that will ensue.