Day 2

Hollyhock in El Retiro Park
Hollyhock in the botanical gardens.

The evening of day one was spent in the Prado until closing. Burt got this first glimpse of Hieronymous Bosch, or Bosco as the Spanish call him at the Prado. Bosch was waaaay ahead of his time. In fact I think he might still be ahead of our time. That was some whacky imagery he painted. He was into the repression of the Inquisition, too. A religious nut job who painted things that could make you crazy just to look at them. He did not hold humans in high regard. We all deserved to be punished and Bosch knew just how he wanted it done.

When our free perusal of the Prado ended we headed into the botanical gardens next door. It was only 8PM. The gardens were past their peak spring flowering but we did witness some ants setting off in their annual mating flight and a few birds eating the flying ants. We saw the Great Tit feeding its young and some wood pigeons. We also thought we saw a wood pipit but can’t be certain. My European bird app proved to be difficult to use and generally too vague to get IDs on little brown birds. This was the most nature filled moment of our entire trip.

Our walk home took us by an overflowing cafe. A mature woman of significant presence was singing from an arm chair on a tiny stage. We could just see her through the crowd. She had a band of young men on bass, drums, guitar, and accordion. The audience hung on her every word. This woman had them and us in her hand. We gaped for a few songs then unwillingly trudged home too tired to stand in the street for a world class performance. Someone told me she was La Doñina but I can’t find her on the internet.

Jet lag was taking over. I was physically exhausted but wide awake. Burt snoozed all night. He was shifting. I tried drugs around 3 AM Madrid time and slept until 10:30. By the time I woke up Burt had already walked half the city.

This horse has really long legs.
This horse has really long legs.
This is a great mixed media remodel.
This is a great mixed media remodel.
Check out the cantilever on this old and new building. It's an art museum.
Check out the cantilever on this old and new building. It’s an art museum.