Sunday, 1 June 2014

Catch Up Time

Life has been busy here in Hare House, so not much time for blogging. Firstly, Harri had his dissertation to finish, which is now done and dusted. He only has one more exam to go then he will have finished his degree ( hurrah!). He has certainly matured this year, but I will be glad when it's all over. Then, I made a flying visit to Malvern Quilt Show, where I briefly met up with Sonia and her friend to say hello! I bought a few essentials ( wadding, thread, a tiny bit of fabric and ordered some longarm quilting rulers- more about them in my next post).Then it was onto a week in Madrid via London.
Madrid is a wonderful city, full of history so of course it rained for nearly the whole week, while everyone at home enjoyed glorious sunshine! Typical. We did all the usual touristy things including a bus tour of the city, which was actually very informative. We visited a few museums and saw far too much art ( to the point of overload). We also did a lot of walking . Mr Hare , in typical fashion, insisted on a visit to the railway station, to compare the new building with the old 'Victorian' one. I found it surprisingly difficult to get any decent food ( being non- meat eating doesn't help). The one vegetarian restaurant we tried was truly awful. The tapas were expensive but fortunately the wine was cheap!
Mr Hare chose the hotel: The Hotel Puerta America because it has each floor designed by a different famous architect. We were on the fourth floor ( didn't have an enormous choice of floors because we wanted a non-smoking room???). This is the corridor to the rooms:

And this was our bathroom:
This was the triumph of design over functionality. The floor of the shower was a sheet of stainless steel, seriously slippery when trying to take a shower! The head of the bed was also  stainless steel, level with the mattress and having the result that the pillows slipped off the bed. Seriously annoying. My other final gripe was that the hotel was advertised as having free wifi access, which turned out to be a complete joke! It was obviously designed to make you pay for the access because in the cafĂ© around the corner the wifi was perfect, yet in the hotel it was so slow as to be impossible to use. These are small irritations in what was otherwise a very enjoyable break.
The metro system in Madrid was fantastic and easy to use. There are loads of wonderful buildings,  parks and  museums.
Mr Hare on the one sunny day of our trip.
I didn't take many photos, but here are a few:
This is a Salvador Dali painting from 1944 entitled: Dream caused by the Flight of a Bee around a Pomegranate a second before waking up.
A Painting by Magritte
The very touristy Iron Market, though still a lovely building:
A garden by the Royal Palace:

Then it was back to go to the last day of Chelsea Flower Show on the Saturday, which is another post in itself.


  1. despite the .. minor blips .. sounds as if you had a wonderful trip .. I loved Malvern show xx

  2. It's just as well you're seem to be packing a lot into your weeks!

    Madrid is on my bucket list - that hotel looks amazing but sorry to hear it wasn't closer to perfect. Little things can really be major annoyances!

  3. Shame I didn't meet you at the quilt show- but I was only there on Saturday morning...

    That hotel looks enough to cause a headache, very clever, but..

  4. Madrid looks fantastic! Shame about the food though, but yay for cheap wine!

  5. Seems like you thoroughly enjoy your retirement, it is surely well deserved! Looking forward for more travel reports :)

  6. wow - that hotel looks amazing (although maybe best experienced in the confines of a magazine?!). It was lovely to meet up with you at Malvern and if you ever fancy meeting up again then let me know - Monmouth is maybe halfwayish?! Sx

  7. *slowly catching up* I love Spain but haven't been that much. Seville - now I loved our stay there and of course Barcelona (fab!) but that's it. I'm envious of your trip and would probably have booked that hotel too :)