Madrid Part 2 - Nov 2018

Dear friends and family,

Very tragic and worrisome to hear about the horrible fires and heavy losses back home in California. It is terrifying to hear about the speed at which these firestorms are capable of moving. Don said he heard six football fields in one minute. Fortunately, for us, our Oakland area has not been affected except for what sounds like fairly thick smoke and air quality. We all meditate on how we can do better at preventing, or at least slowing, global warming. Electric cars work wonderfully (we have only electric); better than gas autos in our opinion. Solar panels also work beautifully, despite some bad mouthing by some. We have 48 on Magnolia's roof and 18 on our house. The panels on our house power our house and our cars. It's magical. On the downside on our carbon footprint, we do fly a fair amount.

The staggeringly beautiful

Portrait of Giovanna degli Albizzi Tornabuoni

by Domenico Ghirlandaio
1489 - 1490, Mixed media on panel.
77 x 49 cm
  • at the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum. Very exciting as we had never been to this museum before. This painting was in such excellent condition. It looked as if it had been painted last year.

Before venturing into the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum, we prowled around some of Madrid's antiquarian bookshops.

Don is looking for books older than this and in far worse condition; he is more interested in the paper than the book itself.

A late breakfast

And why not wash that down with a little wine?

Finally made it to the Thyssen-B Museum:

Portrait of Baron HH Thyssen-Bornemisza, an avid and evidently obsessed art collector,
 by Lucien Freud, 1981-82
oil on canvas

Dream Caused by the Flight of a Bee around a Pomegranate a Second before Waking 
by Salvador Dali, 1944

Juan de Flandes
Portrait of an Infanta
Possibly Catherine of Aragon

Hans Memling, Portrait of a Young Man Praying, 1485

And on the verso, also by Memling. Both oil on panel.

Lucas Cranach the Younger, Portrait of a Woman, 1539
oil on panel

Albrecht Durer
Jesus Among the Doctors, 1506

Group Portrait with Sir Elijah and Lady Impey, 1783-84 by Johan Zoffany
An early colonial family in India (it appears). Their little girl is dressed in native clothes and dancing to an Indian raga

Le Paon blanc (The White Peacock) by Hermenegild Anglada i Camarasa, 1904
oil on panel

    Enough of these, but you can see the Thyssen has some amazing pieces and not at all crowded, at least when we were there.

Don at Plaza Mayor, the weather is all over the place.

The beautiful Mercado San Miguel, a covered market.

Coffee break across from the cathedral next to the Royal Palace. This is another day and we’ve been walking a good distance again.

Walking along the Manzanares River on the way to see some Goya frescoes. I believe it was (the late) Mel Ramos and Squeak Carnwath who first recommended we see the frescoes several years ago, but we had run out of time on that earlier trip. Our friend, Angus O'Neill reminded us in time to see them this trip.

Inside the Hermitage of San Antonio de la Florida, where we were told photos were not allowed, but there was another tourist happily snapping photos, at times right in front of the guard, so we took some also.

Walking back to Madrid Central, we cross over railroad tracks to the rear of the hermitage.

A tribute to the maestro.

Passing the Temple of Debod where I once sprained my ankle jumping off a wall.

Probably this very wall; not my smartest move.

Don Quixote on Rocinante and Sancho Panza with Cervantes contemplating from behind.

At Astor, we actually made reservations; a rarity for us.

A delicious beet and pomegranate hummus.

Ox hamburger.

Do I have to share?

Fettucine with black truffles and parmesan

We drank the complimentary dessert drink before we photographed it, but thought their serving tray deserved a mention.

Adios to the Neptune fountain down the block from us.

Stopping in to visit the Casado Santapau Gallery, which is Alex Arrechea's gallery in Madrid.

Living wall outside the Caixa Foundation.

Then back to one of our favorite tapas bars in Madrid, Gonzalez.

Needless to say, very friendly staff and the food is great, too.

Adios, Madrid!

❤️💕❤️💕❤️ Era and Don