Starbucks in Madrid has us pegged. The barista with grey eyes smiles when we ask, again, for the wifi codes along with our espressos.
Madrid is a patchwork of color, languages, and mouth-watering cuisine. Mom and Spanish-Dad found a little flat tucked inside a colorful courtyard; drying laundry and wailing toddlers are our constant companions. Additionally, we are deep in the heart of the most ethnic section of the capital city. Renown as a low-rent district, it attracts a vast array of immigrants; over 50% of the population is estimated to be of foreign origin. Popular amongst squatters, drug dealers, socialist youth, and newly arrived immigrants, the area bears an eclectic aura, the "buenos dias"s laced with heavy accents. Our neighbors are Moroccan, Senegalese, Sri Lankan, and Bangladeshi, though countless other languages, dialects, and traditional dress frequent our narrow streets. I adore it.
Guitarist outside the Prado Museum (who has an amazing CD)
Street musicians at El Rastro
And in the metro
Goofing around with a blue balloon outside the Reina Sophia Modern Art Musuem