It was time to pack up our things and leave our newly acquired home… time to get back to reality, back to work, back home…
We bid adios to the neighborhood gato and the flowering sweet almond…
“Hasta luego, gatito!”
We locked everything up and drove back to Madrid. We arrived in the evening and checked into the Hotel Clement Barajas.
Looking out the window from our room at the Hotel Clement Barajas
We arrived at Madrid’s Barajas airport. The last time we flew into the older part of the airport, but this time we arrived in the newer part, which is beautiful. A bit of history: The airport was originally built in 1927 and of course has gone through numerous remodels since then. This newest terminal was built in 2004, so it is quite new. The architecture is very attractive!
This time while in Madrid we decided to try out a different hotel. We really liked our stay at the Hotel Plaza Mayor last time, but just wanted to stay somewhere different. We picked the Hotel Victoria because it was located in what seemed to be an interesting side street very close to Puerta del Sol.
See what a cool side street?
There were all these awesome tiles decorating the exterior walls of shops and restaurants.
…and it was right down the street from the Museo del Jamon!
Remember? We went there on our last trip.
There were quite a few photo opps just within the block outside the Hotel Victoria. Here is Curt being oh-so-serious in front of another set of tiles. (We did NOT go to another bullfight, by the way. Once was enough for us, I think!)
We left Casa Olivos the next day at around noon and got back on the road to Madrid. Our plane was leaving early the next morning, so we wanted to make the five hour drive back to Madrid with enough time to relax and walk around before calling it a night.
We booked a room at the Hotel Clement Barajas. It was located fairly close to the airport and we figured this might make for an easier drive in the morning before we had to catch our flight.
Hotel Clement Barajas
The Hotel Clement Barajas turned out to be a great place to stay because it was modern and clean, had underground parking, and had a gas station right across the street.
Room at Hotel Clement Barajas
Hotel Barajas underground parking
The hotel was located in the Barrio de Barajas which was not “touristy” at all. We went for a walk that night and really enjoyed seeing all the local spanish people out for the evening with their families: walking along the streets, having drinks in the bars, and sitting outside at the plaza.
Barrio de Barajas
After landing and gathering up our luggage (all carried on) we headed over to the rental car agency booth. In line in front of us was an interesting character: a muscle-bound American who was unhappy… cursing and dropping f-bombs… made me embarrassed to be thought of in the same cultural category. He was rude and annoying. The people behind the counter didn’t seem to notice too much, though. Maybe the Spanish really are as laid back as they say in all the guidebooks…
The drive from the Barajas airport to the center of Madrid was rather eventful. Actually we did not drive from the airport to the CENTER of Madrid exactly: we drove AROUND the entirety of Madrid proper and returned to the airport and THEN drove to the center. We laughed and said that when we later told people that we “drove all around Madrid” we REALLY drove AROUND Madrid.
Luckily we are easily amused.