“Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colours. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.” Terry Pratchett
I love to travel. I love the feeling when the plane touches down and the air hits you as you walk down the steps – it feels like a new start gently touching your face and letting you know everything will be OK. The apprehension of the unknown and the uncertainty of people around you talking in a tongue that you don’t understand scares and excites at the same time, and the seeds of change lie in your hand, ready for the latest adventure.
Don’t get me wrong, I love to go back to the same place time and time again. San Diego is my haven; a place where my family congregate and I feel like the last piece of a jigsaw, ready to slot back in and carry on with life. But I still love the sense of new, and so this weekend, Little Bean and I took a trip to Madrid to visit Elle before she heads back to San Diego after her exciting year studying there.
I’ve been to Spain before – Barcelona and the Spanish-Portuguese border are areas I know well, but Madrid was a totally new entity to me. Cobbled streets that we had never explored and tiny cafes full of tapas and sangria that we were yet to discover. How exciting.
We touched down and took a taxi to the centre, chatting away in my stilted Spanish and the taxi drivers (much better) stilted English while navigating the streets and working out the game plan. The rays beat down on us; a welcome change to the winter we have been experiencing in England for the past 8 months and once we had arrived I was determined to get out in the sun.
Elle met us and we had a fantastic weekend of rowing on the boating lake, Spanish style picnics, impromptu flamenco dancing in a bar with some locals while stuffing ourselves with Iberian ham and cheeses, and some Polaroid memories made.
Wherever we are, continents apart of in the same capital city, the memories we made this weekend will last longer than the tan lines and hangovers. Here’s to the next adventure!