How Madrid Will Make You Fall In Love

Anthony Ham, a writer and photographer specialized in Spain, Africa, the Artic, India and the Middle East, once said:” More than a decade after I fell for Madrid and decided to call it home, the life that courses relentlessly through the streets here still excites me. Here is a place where the passions of Europe’s most passionate country are the fabric of daily life, a city with music in its soul and an unshakeable spring in its step. But Madrid is also one of the most open cities on earth and it doesn’t matter where you’re from for the oft-heard phrase to ring true: ‘If you’re in Madrid, you’re from Madrid”. In my opinion this is the quote that describes the city the best. You just have to go out and you will find a whole new world waiting for you.
I am spending two months of my summer break in this city because I got a summer internship in an insurance company. When my mother proposed me to try to get again this internship this summer I was really happy and I did my best to get it. Truth is,, besides the hot temperatures that this city offers, Madrid has a special place into my heart. You always find people in the street, no matters what time it is, how hot it is, how late it is, and they will always make you smile. Madrid is a city full of life.
I do not work on the weekends so I usually use that time to rest and to visit the city, even if this last thing is made almost impossible by the high temperatures. Last Saturday I started my day pretty late. I woke up and relaxed in my bed until my body started to ask for food. I decided to have breakfast in a bakery near home, called Panines, and that was the best way to start the day. This bakery called Panines, offers to its clients a large variety of choice between homemade desserts and homemade salty things, for a really low price. I chose to take a croissant au chocolat, a napolitana with sweet cream and an orange juice. It all cost less than 5 euros. There are other things as well, such as salty croissant with ham and spinach, or filled with types of cheese. There is a roll as well that is delicious: it is made with the dough used to bake croissant. The only difference is that it is squared and inside they put ricotta cheese and spinach. I guess this bakery will be the reason why I will go back home fatter, but it is worthy to get fat if I have the chance to eat again there.
After this relaxing and amazing breakfast, I decided to take the subway and go to Puerta del Sol to walk around. This is my favorite part of the city because the houses are colorful, the streets are full of trees and between the houses people put cloths so that the sun does not reach the people in the street. This makes walking over there more pleasant.
I first walked to Plaza Mayor, a squared place surrounded by antique buildings and bars. This square has a particular charm because it is completely different from everything that surrounds it. When you walk inside, you find yourself in the 15th century, where in the past there was the city market. Next to it, outside, there is the Mercado de San Miguel, a place that is worth going during the night to eat dinner and drink sangria.
I walked back to Puerta del Sol and then I walked towards Ópera. This is a square located outside the Madrid Opera. I did not stay that much here because there is no shadow there and the temperatures were raising.
Since that in this period there is PhotoEspaña, an exhibition spread all over Madrid that collects multiple works from different p0hotographers from all over the world. The thing that makes it special is that most of the pictures are black and white photography. I decided to visit two of the location where the exhibition is located: Loewe and the Círculo de Bellas Artes.
The first one, the Loewe, is a super chic store located in Gran Vía. The exhibition was named “Cien años después (A Hundred Years Later)”. It contained a lot of different portraits made all around Europe from different photographers. The fact is I was dressed in a comfortable way to survive both the walk and the hot temperatures, so I felt out of place into that store, where there was a concierge as well ready to open the door for you. Later I went to the Círculo de Bellas Artes, where by paying 4 euros I was able to visit three shows: the first one, my favorite, was called “Con estilo proprio (A own style)” and the photographer was Louise Dahl-Wolfe, the other two shows were “The Castle” by Federico Clavarino, and “Transiciones. Diez años que trastornaron Europa (Transitions. Ten years that transformed Europa)” made by various photographers. I loved the way Louise Dahl-Wolfe was able to capture every single moment and make it special. I liked how she managed to go beyond the only capturing the moment to capture the feelings as well.
Then, to end my day, I went to eat tapas. I chose to eat a small portion of salad, croquetas de patatas y pollo (chicken and potatoes nuggets) and, to finish, tortilla de patatas. The tortilla is my favorite kind of tapas. It is amazing and impossible to describe. It is a must eat when you are visiting Spain.


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