Monday, September 20, 2010

Sunday in Madrid, Part III

Soon it was time for lunch. As soon as everyone was up and at'em we began our trek to a restaurant that was recommended by Fodors. Just as we were making a left turn onto Gran Via, I noticed barricades along the avenue. Being the inqusitive type, I threw my body over the railing, almost falling on my head to see what was approaching. There were zillions of policia on motorcycles making all kinds of racket, and convertibles with people standing up waving. I think they were the sponsors. I still didn't get it, but soon it became apparent what was about to occur because I almost got my head knocked off by a flying bicycle. There were hundreds of them.

Here was the leader.

Here came the rest of the group.

See what I mean? They almost got me!

There they go!

This went on for several hours. People stayed and cheered and I went into the restaurant. I have no idea who won. I even got a paper today (Monday) to see the winner. Couldn't make heads of tails of it. I'm taking the paper home with me so someone can translate and I won't be in suspense. I hope it's the guy in blue..mainly because I got so many good shots of him. I'll keep you posted.

More later.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Sunday Morning in Madrid, Part II

Bless her heart, it was an older woman who became ill. No traffic accident, no guns and no fights. In the middle of all of this mess, I dressed quickly and dashed down the stairs and spoke with the police and asked him what happened. He told me in plain english that the woman had become ill. No car crash, no guns, and no fights. I still think something is fishy. Two ambulances?

After my conversation with the police, I wandered down to the corner where the motley crowd was hanging out. I saw a woman who I had seen earlier hanging out in front of our building. This time she emerged from an apartment building around the corner mumbling stuff in least I think it was spanish. I heard her say something about loco. She wasn't happy. She had her suitcase dragging behind her. I didn't say a word to her...afraid she would knock my lights out.

As I was recovering from this fiasco, I noticed people walking towards our building.It looked like a tour bus had just dropped off fifty or so people. By now it was almost noon and I soon figured out that these smartly dressed people were going to the church next to the hair salon next to our building. I took more photos. This was after church.
These two kids just went to mass. Looks like they got a lot out of it. Bless their little hearts. Going home. Time to get dressed and go to lunch.You aren't going to believe what happened next.

Sunday Morning in Madrid

So there I was eating my chocolate croissant and drinking a coke (my favorite breakfast) in our apartment as Janie, Dennis, and Shirley slept. It was 10:00 a.m. As I opened our windows I gazed down to the street and to my amazement saw an ambulance and two police cars. Soon I sprang into action. Being a closet photojournalist, I grabbed my camera and established my perch on the balcony. Just as I started clicking away, another ambulance appeared. Hum. I looked to my right and saw a few men standing on the corner looking to their right. Was there an accident? There was a lot of conversation going on between the medics and the police. I couldn't hear what they were saying, but if I could hear it, I wouldn't understand it anyway. Oh well. These people were in no hurry, so I figured that either someone was dead or someone wasn't that badly injured. My neighbor across the street, a nice Cambodian man was also witnessing the incident. He owns the small store across the street where I buy my daily coke, "One euro por favor." "Gracias." We talk a lot. During this incident, we didn't establish eye contact. I was in my robe and maybe it's against their custom to look at some crazy woman standing on a balcony in her robe with a camera in hand.

To let you know who and if someone was in the ambulance, here's what happened next.

Because I am using a netbook in a foreign country, the service is sllllllooooowwww. So I will try to finish this blog in the next post.