Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Day 8 in Madrid, Laundry & Travel Day

Today was check out day, I got up around 9:30 to go downstairs for breakfast. I ate my 2 pieces of toast with Jam, drank my glass of OJ and went back to my room to stuff all my clothes in my luggage.  I had no sightseeing plans for today, I knew I would be back in Madrid soon, plenty of time to really get to know the city.  I took a picture of the swing set hang out area of the hostel, had not seen another one quite like it in all my travels.

Hang out area in hostel 

Hang out area in hostel
I checked out of my room about 5 minutes before the 11 am check out time.  I asked the man at reception where the laundry room was, he told me, explained I needed to buy tokens from him, 2 euros for wash and 2 euros to dry.  He showed me the laundry room, how to operate the machines and gave me the detergent.  I started my laundry and went to the hostel's movie room to hang out and wait for my clothes.  There were two people in the movie area when I got there, they chose the movie The Lookout to watch.  I watched the movie in between using my computer to surf the internet.

When my laundry was finished, I rolled my clothes, a packing technique that allows you to get the most room out of your luggage, and put them back in my bag.  I left my luggage with the hostel staff, I had several hours before my train and did not want to drag my bag everywhere with me.  I went to get lunch after storing my bag, since I enjoyed the Tako Away place yesterday, I went back again today.  Big mistake, the burrito I had ordered was missing from the menu. I ordered a beef burrito, it tasted like dog food.

I went back to the movie room with my lunch, I enjoyed the Kas Lemon soda I bought, ate about half the burrito before I could not take anymore.  I did not realize it tasted like dog food until later, otherwise I don't think I would have eaten any of it.

Later in the day I went to Cafe Commercial, down the street from my hostel. Our hostel said this cafe was the most famous place in Madrid for Churros, I love Churros, so I did not want to miss this place.  I paid 5.50 euros for the Chocolate con Churro, translation hot chocolate and Churros.  Spaniards may think Cafe Commercial has the best Churros, I disagree, I have had much better Churros in Arizona.  Spain does not make the sugary churros I grew up with, what they have are unflavored deep fried batters of dough, even dipped in chocolate, not what I call tasty.

My last trip out was to get dinner for the train. I decided to try something different, Spanish pizza.  I got three slices, they were square shaped, for 5 euros.  I stuffed the pizza into my backpack, filled up my bottle of water and left the hostel around 8:30 pm, my train was scheduled to leave at 9:50 pm.  The lid to my water bottle broke, so I bought a new bottle at the station and some candy for the trip.

I did not get a bed on the overnight train, the seats were big and comfortable, they did not recline much.  The train was packed, the Turistsa section was full, and people boarded at stops along the way.  Sometime around midnight it was lights off in our section of the train.  There were some people still talking, I put in my earplugs, I got a some sleep, but not much.  The chairs do not have enough leg room to allow you to really stretch your legs so they became uncomfortable after awhile and it was just awkward trying to sleep sitting up.  The neck pillow I drug around Europe and did not use, got lost sometime between when I checked out of my hostel and boarded the train.

We arrived in Lisbon on time at 7:30 am, I do not know if I got off at the main train station, there was some confusion when the train stopped.  There was no announcement, the doors did not open automatically. Someone figured out how to open a door, then the train began moving.  I considered jumping out but decided against it when someone said, "it's moving!" I could have gotten out, it was moving, but slowly.  The train stopped a second time, I opened the door and got off along with a few others.

An American or Canadian on the train was panicked, she was separated from her travel partner.  They were scheduled to speak at a conference in Lisbon.  She finally sent him a text via Facebook, he got it and was going to meet her back  at the station.  I went to the metro and found my way to my hostel.  I could not check in, it was by now the morning, I went to the movie room and relaxed on the sofa until check in time at 3 pm.

No comments:

Post a Comment