22.07.22 — Journal

Queen & Further Musical Adventures

In between a couple of trips to Asturias and after a week back in the UK, I’ve also been up to plenty of other stuff here in Madrid. As I was looking over my photos, I noticed that a lot of them have had somewhat of a musical theme, and so I’ve grouped them all together in this quick little post.

My first little musical adventure took me, Sara, and Marta to a club, where live acts accompanied a wild programme of shows and events every twenty minutes. We had an absolute blast, even heading out for a few vermouths the day after to “balance the pH”…

Another lovely moment saw Thuy head back over to visit Spain for a few days. Naturally, we had to meet up for lunch, and had a lovely meal at a spot just a few streets away from the office where I first met her when I moved to Spain for the first time back in 2016. How time flies!

We also nipped into the office for a cheeky snoop around…

That week I also had another meal date, this time with Kevin, James, and Sara. Kevin and James were stopping in Madrid for the night before grabbing a plane back over to the US, and so we all arranged to meet up and have an evening meal at one of my favourite spots. We had an absolute hoot of a time, enjoying dish after dish whilst laughing over some hilarious stories and some strong gin and tonics…

The Cibeles Palace looked absolutely resplendent in its pride colours.

My next musical event took place when Danni came over for a flying visit. She arrived on a Thursday as I left work, but we were both back out of the house by 6:30pm in order to head to the north of the city and the WiZink Center. We arrived at the huge stadium early and in earnest to see a band which formed a massive part of my childhood: Queen!

The show was insane fun and an absolute joy – we both left absolutely hoarse, hungry, and – in my case – dying for the toilet! This was nothing that a McDonalds couldn’t fix, and so we had some tipsy chips on a bench before heading back home to rest for our next day.

We spent the day after the concert wandering the city streets, having lunch at one of my favourite spots, and then heading out for some drinks in the evening. Our original plan was to head to some of the pride concerts, but we wound up so deep in conversation on a terrace that before we knew it it was midnight!

The next day was Saturday, and we’d both to be up relatively early in order to grab a plane together back to the UK, as I’d yet again to head back to my native country for another and rather exciting event – but I’ll have to get to that next time. I’m so busy recently I can’t get these posts out on time!

I leave this post with a silly anecdote which will hopefully be as amusing for you all as it was stressful for me…

I was recently bought some new sunglasses by my mum: an actual decent pair of sunnies after years of using either cheap pairs that I’d then lose or break or, as was the case with my last pair, sunglasses that accidentally stolen from my auntie. Shout out to her for putting up with my clumsiness!

Speak of clumsiness, I was now in possession of a (relatively compared to what had come before) expensive pair of sunglasses, so the theory was that I’d be a bit less clumsy and not leave them around/sit on them/drop them every five minutes. Said theory was thoroughly disproven when, during my first trip up to Asturias, I left them on the table of the bar that I’d said goodbye to Kevin at. Thankfully he noticed them sitting there and took them back home with him, and so I was able to pick them up just a couple of weeks later when I returned up north.

Then, just two days later, I took them out again to the restaurant where I’d met up with Kevin, James, and Sara. As we left, my lesson had been learned, and I grabbed them from the table. The problem came when I popped them in the basket of the bike I used to get home – even as I placed them in it I did think to myself that there was a good chance that I’d forget to take them back out.

At about 2am that night I woke up for a glass of water, and for some reason something clicked in my brain and I suddenly remembered: crap – the sunglasses!

Well, you can imagine the sight as I, in some Christmas pyjamas that I had lying around, went running down the street to the bike station in a blind panic-fuelled hope that they’d still be there. As I arrived and realised that neither the glasses nor the bike I’d used were there, my heart sank. There was nothing to do but head back home, where I send a desperate email to BiciMAD (the public bike service here) asking them to return them on the off chance they were found, quoting the number of the bike I’d used after searching for the it in the history section within the app.

It was at that moment that it suddenly occurred to me that there might just be a way to search for the location of every bike by its number, and so I headed back into the app to see if I could wrangle the location of the bike I’d used – and lo and behold, I found it!

You know what happens next – the pyjamas went back on and I was once again power walking down the street and back to the same bike station, but this time it wasn’t to look for a bike – it was to ride one! I grabbed the first working one I could find, and off I went, speeding around the empty streets of Madrid at 3am in my festive PJs.

Arriving at the station containing the bike I’d used the evening before, I found the bike in question and – miraculously – the sunglasses were still in the basket!

The frustration from earlier was replaced with elation as I headed back home – on a bike again, of course. The elation didn’t help me sleep though, and so the next day I was tired and grumpy – but at least I had my sunglasses…