Halloween, at night, in Madrid, the day had begun in shock and awe, that is in Manchester Airport where it is “certainly not hysterical” to consider lip balm and bottled spring water very dangerous items that are consequently confiscated – along with toothpaste and other essential terrorist items: ever seen a terrorist with bad teeth maybe? (Another surefire way to recognise a terrorist is that he, yes it is a (mussel-)man of course, carries more than one piece of hand-luggage, so we had to gaffer tape a bag with a video camera and check it in, pick it up again in Madrid once we were out of the hysteria zone.) The Spanish speaking TV was bringing news and images from the streets where plastic barbie devils and grave yard regulars mingled with the business as usual beer swilling, jamon eating Madrileños. “A night of witches and fear – La Noche de Miedo”, the beautiful and anything but Spanish looking blonde TV reporter communicated from the streets of desire. We changed the channel and watched Tom Hanks take a pee in Spanish, prayed to Shiva and slowly sank into our own exciting dreams of times to come: tomorrow we fly to Ecuador to spend 9-10 months doing whatever we will be documenting in this blog.
The wake up call came knocking on our door and we were torn from deep epic dreams – went to sleep slightly nervous in the partly joyfully anticipating manner that besets the ambiguous travelling soul woke in travelling mode: turn on the TV, tune into the bathroom and drop out for the complementary breakfast. A taxi was as easily found as we had been delivered to Hostal Cantabrico (commendable) near the famous Puerta del Sol, and we’re on the road. Madrid’s Barajas airport is huge and we aim for terminal four, which handles all Iberia’s flights. Bags checked in already in Manchester, checked in and boarding passes acquired upon arrival last night we waltz through the escalators, lifts and shopping havens, grab a sandwich, buy a peculiar crystal based electrical current mosquito bite treatment device and head for the gate: soon we will be flying high again.