Buen Retiro Park, Madrid
I have been to Spain two times. Both have been memorable trips. The first time I visited with my friend Lisa before I continued on to Switzerland to be an au pair. We had some great moments, and one not so great moment on that trip. I fell in love with Barcelona and Sevilla during my first visit to Spain.
My grasp of the Spanish language at the time included the following words and phrases: por favor, (please); gracias, (thank you); and quisiera una cerveza por favor, (I would like a beer please).
I still laugh thinking back to every time we went out for tapas (small plates) we ended up with ensalda rusa, (potato salad). I was not doing the ordering but somehow it kept showing up on the table. To say the least I tried many varieties of potato salad!! Despite the odds I did manage to eat some excellent paella ( Spanish rice dish with saffron, chicken, seafood, etc.) on this trip and the next one as well.
Some memorable moments from Spain (first trip):
(1) Going to the discotheque on the waterfront in Barcelona. We stayed out until the next day!
(2) Seeing the blue, blue Mediterranean Sea
(3) Wandering around La Ramblain Barcelona; what an interesting area to walk with all the shops, live stock, cafes and flowers.
(4) Eating an excellent meal at Can Punyetes Taverna in Madrid after Lisa read the review. Our reservation was for 9:30pm and it took a good 2.5 hours to eat and drink good wines; now that is enjoying life!
(5) Going to see a Real Madrid soccer match!! Wow, I loved the energy!!
(6) Hanging out in a plaza soaking up the sun talking for hours to American students about their time studying in Sevilla.
(7) The bad moment was walking along in Plaza del Sol in Madrid spacing out and all the sudden hearing someone screaming, turning back, and realizing that Lisa was being robbed of her camera that she held around her neck! Yikes. We then went to the police station in a police van and she proceeded to give a police report and I could do nothing but support her due to the language barrier.
Barcelona (including the Mediterranean Sea, La Rambla)
Madrid (Plaza Mayor, preparing for the soccer match)
Sevilla (including Torre del Oro, Plaza de Espana and a flamenco show)