A funny thing happened on our last night in Madrid. My mother asked a bouncer for directions to a restaurant that we had made a booking for dinner. I tried to stop her, but to no avail. What she didn´t realise was that she was asking a doorman in front a striptease establishment.
¨Please, señor, can you tell me where this restaurant is?¨ - was the rough translation.
He was a pleasant enough chap, even if he did have his two front teeth missing.
It turned out that he was Brazilian... an irony, perhaps?
So there we were, the three of us - my mother having a lovely chat with this man, asking him all about his origins, when finally, she asked him if there were good drinks offered inside the place he was guarding.
His response? ¨Ahh... no... I don´t think you´d like the drinks that are offered here, señora. They come with da chickie-chickies¨
What can I say? It´s never a dull moment with my mother. She´s always the last one to get with the program. The poor thing was horrified that she was enquiring about going into a Spanish strip joint. Of course, I filled her in, after much mirth on my part.
So, on we went to the restuarant, where we had an over-priced, below-average paella and some average sangria.
The next day, we took a train to Toledo, where I am now typing to you from. (That was yesterday, as their internet connection was almost non-existent, so I gave up trying to post this.) A wonderfully picturesque city - with photo opportunities at every turn. I would live here happily if it weren´t for the religious icons and images encountered at every turn.
We had lunch yesterday in a popular plaza, and I was shocked to see a group of people holding a mini-protest against abortion in the centre of the square... in the name of Christianity and ¨goodness¨.
Again, I wish I could speak Spanish more fluently... I would have approached them and said something along the lines of: ¨You mean that the ten abortions I´ve had so far were not the will of God, and I'm going to hell?¨
Of course, I said no such thing, and gave them a unimpressed look instead. Mental note to self: learn Spanish, you idiot!
So, here I am... typing this post in a painfully slow way, as I´m using the hotel´s computer in the foyer. Internet access here is free, but my little laptop kept failing to connect. I have an inkling why - I am seated at a computer with an ancient-looking 14¨monitor, still operating on Windows 98. The RAM is driving me mad, as it is thinking really hard about having more than one window of IE open... Tabs! What are those? *cringe*
So, normally, I would write a lot more, but this is just too annoying.
I don´t want to die here, waiting for a page to refresh.
I´ll sign off, and write again when I get to Seville tomorrow...
But, before I do, I want to say that I am horrified to see the events that are transpiring in Japan - how devastating! I hope that none of you have loved ones visiting there at present, and that all is peaceful and calmer in your world. But, my heart goes out to the Japanese - how they must be suffering...
All the best, mis amigos... ¡Hasta mañana!