18.04.19 — Journal

Wandering & Cooking

In my last post I promised I would try and get a blog post out before the Easter holidays, and as I sit here writing this, there’s 40 minutes left before they officially begin – so I kind-of almost maybe managed…

Anyhow, I’m not here to debate the timings of said posts, but rather to serve up the latest in my collection of photos and little stories. As mentioned previously, I’ve been somewhat under the weather with a cold, but I shall try and refrain from my habitual infinite self pity herein; and I shall instead begin by recounting the first excursion I made to try and pick myself up a little.

I seem to have accidentally built this trip up a lot, but in the end it was just another IKEA trip, this time for some blinds, a new plant pot, and some more towels – for I’ll need a grand total of four when Cake Club come and visit! That’s right – the three of them will be here a few weeks from now for a proper reunion in the city! I cannot put into words how excited I am to see everyone again – I saw Heidi when I visited her home city of Oslo last year, but the last time I saw Loredana and Megan was upon their leaving Madrid last summer.

Stormy clouds gather over the south of Madrid.
The sun shines down a street, reflecting off the wet road surface and the facades of buildings.

The weather during the visit was pretty bizarre.

As you can see, the weather during said outing couldn’t quite decide what it was doing, with warm sun, strong winds, and threatening near-black clouds hanging around all at once. I managed to miss the eventual downpour as it occurred during my train journey back to my flat in the centre, but the weather then meant I didn’t dare venture out that evening, and so a cozy evening in ensued.

During the evening, I cooked myself a delicious (if somewhat spicy) dish of red curry and prawns, and then two carrot cakes. I would have just made one big one, but through some kind of mathematical black magic I wound up with an excessive amount of cake mix and even more cream cheese icing.

A bowl of red curry.
A carrot cake topped with cream cheese frosting, grated carrots, cinnamon, and walnuts.

Whilst waiting for the cakes to bake (which I had to do one at once due to the teensy size of my oven), I had a personal grooming crisis which led to a revelation. I noticed that a spot had appeared on my forehead in an area not covered by my fringe, and after being rather cross about it for a bit, I had the (perhaps obvious) idea to change the direction of my fringe to cover it.

Well, this was quite the revelation, and even though said pesky spot has since cleared up, I have decided to place my fringe to this other side from now onwards, so enamoured am I with the new configuration. Here’s a gratuitous vanity selfie, which I shall now justify by complaining that I never seem to appear in any photos on my own blog…

A selfie because it’s my blog so I do what I want.

A photo of myself.

Anyway, back to the cakes. One was left here at home for friends to try, but the other was – as per tradition – taken into work for everyone’s critiques. This time there were less complaints about the quantity of sugar than usual, so maybe I’m finally tweaking the recipe properly for local tastes! Or maybe it was just the good luck brought by a personal rainbow that appeared on my desk…

A rainbow is formed over my keyboard at work.

Another day in the office marked the moment that I finally had a spare hour to make a rather exciting trip, for, as history repeats itself, Erretres is on the move once more!

The first time I began working at Erretres back in 2016 we were based in the iconic Plaza de España, however, just a few months into my internship, we were packing up our iMacs and moving just one street away into a much bigger space in the form of our current offices.

In a very short while we shall be repeating this process, moving our entire operation to a new location which I shall, for now, maintain undisclosed. It’s a much bigger office once again, but this time we’ll be living a life of luxury with an array of new ameneties and one big surprise which I shall leave for the photos!

I sit in a chair on a porch in a house.
A large house.
I stand in a dry pool.

That’s right – we’ve got a pool!

So the pool is currently dry, the garden needs a good tending to, and the interior is a bomb site whilst they finish the wiring (hence the total lack of photos taken inside), but I wasn’t going to pass up on the opportunity to see where we’d be moving to – and it did not disappoint!

I am very excited to bring more details about this wildly cool new space, and you shan’t have to wait for all to long, as there’s just one week to go as of the day this post goes live! I’ll be back with more photos as we move and get settled in, but you can also follow me on Instagram, where my stories are the only means by which I communicate what I’m up to in (more or less) real time.

Seeing as it’s now puente (public holidays) for Easter, though, let’s move on from talking about work. This past weekend I really, really needed to get out of my flat and get some fresh air, as I am now so comfortable in my own little space that I sometimes find that I’ve let myself get a little too cosy and cooped up inside.

To this end I decided to go for a long stroll down the river all the way to the lake, which was about an hour and a half from my flat. Descending to the Matadero and riverside park which I often visit, I then began heading off westward, following the river through the centre of the city until reaching the Casa de Campo, a huge green (well, green-ish) plot of land.

A bridge over a river.

I do love a good bridge, and the river provides plenty.

Once I arrived at the lake, which has finally been filled in after being drained and undergoing renovations to rebuild its banks, I grabbed a bottle of water and sat down to sketch some ideas for some personal projects.

After eavesdropping on a trio of old ladies who were debating the upcoming elections and figuring out how to use audio messages on WhatsApp, I was soon wafted with the smell of a barbecue, and headed off to find some cheaper food towards the centre.

Concluding the weekend with some Sunday evening wine and pizza with a friend, I’ve then only had to work three days this week, and I am now enjoying the beginning of a four-day weekend. There’ll be plenty of Easter processions in the city, which I really got into the jive of during my first Easter in Madrid, but this year I don’t think I’ll be attending too many.

I now sleepily conclude this post, and I make a – given my track record – wildly dubious promise to be back soon to either update you all on the office move or my movements during these Easter holidays!