Our journey began at 7:00am on Saturday morning. It was yet another 3 day weekend in Spain and we were off the the south of Spain, Seville in our handy dandy fiatt 500. The drive was beautiful,the sun was shining, the radio was booming and Trey and I were having one of our many deep conversations of life, love, and travel. We passed several Spanish farms raising olive and orange trees. It was a pleasant site to see solar pannels for miles. Spain has very expensive electric so this is something they have taken seriously in Spain to produce efficient and cost effective power.
With 4 and a half hours behind us we finally arrived in Seville. The weather was gorgous and reminded us of a spring day in Charleston. We rolled down the windows as we rode through the city streets of Seville. We rode through the old town ewwing and aweing over the old architecture and beauty of this city. The streets were swarming with people and the parking was impossible. After we dropped off our luggage at the Airbnb we had to find parking. Apparently this is a very difficult task to do in Seville and we were unaware that this would be an issue. After driving around for nearly an hour with me every so often saying "oh there...nope garage entrance", we finally gave up and searched for public parking. We noticed a blue parking sign with an arrow and the word Saba on it. Without further hesitation Trey jumped in the line. We both were thinking okay maybe the garage is backed up no worries we are on vacation we can wait. Another hour
and a half later and only 4 miles to the entrance of the garage we had finally made it. Trey and I were exhausted and became hangry. We didn't know if the public garage was overnight parking or not, so we both dreaded the thought that we might have to move the car.
The hanger took over me and I had to use the restroom. We hurried through the Corte Ingles in search of a restroom. Salvation was ahead just past the flamanco dresses to the left. What a relief but now to conquer the hanger.The idea was to arrive in Seville and find a great lunch place, but at this point at 4:30pm we would have eaten anything. We realized we needed cash and we're in search of a bank as well. Trey's lack of energy from the "hanger" and my irrational running around from the "hanger" landed us around the corner and finally were able to take a load off and recharge.
We order a lovely appitizer of salted cod and fresh avacado with a drizzle of balsamic it was just what we needed. Next we ordered our entrees Trey ordered cod stuffed ravaoli and I ordered salmon and veggies. We almost didn't come up for air. The "hanger" had subsided and we both had returned to ourselves again! Team Trelsea was ready on the go. We found out we could leave our car in the garage for the weekend if we purchased a weekend card. So that is just what we did and we're happy we didn't have to move the car again. We walked back to our Airbnb to take a siesta and get ready for the evening.
After a nice nap we were ready to go out on the town. Trey called and made reservations at a flamanco show. We wanted to see flamanco in the South where the art had originated. We had seen flamanco before in Madrid, but we had a feeling it would be different. We were off to the show and as we walked to the autotorium we admired the beautiful cobblestone streets of Seville. I most of all enjoyed window shopping and looking at the clothing botiques on every corner. I know Trey was happy we were strolling later on the evening so he wouldn't have to go into all of these stores, and his wallet was happy as well. We wound around to the old autotorium and collected our tickets at will call. We were lucky we arrived early because it was first come first serve seating. We sat front row to the far right of the stage it was perfect. The show began and Trey and I were entranced in the beautiful story. We enjoyed that the male and female dances the most. They did 3 dances together. At the show in Madrid, it was each dancer by themselves, so this was nice to see the bond and chemistry you must have to flamanco together. The music was a little different the guitarist was fantastic! The dancers really felt the music and told a beautiful stories through the art of flanamco. We throughly enjoyed the show. After the show we thought we would walk around for a bit and get a feel for the night life in Seville. It reminded us in certain areas of King St. on a SAT. night. The only difference everyone was speaking Spanish! We weren't feeling much in the bar mood so we stumbled upon a quite street just off of the busy plaza, and went into a very swanky Asian restaurant called Wasabi (no not your American chain friends hehe). It was very busy and everyone that went in had reservations. They told us they did not have a table for us but we were welcome to sit at the bar table. We had no problem with that. We ordered some white wine and ejoyed the relaxing ambiance. The sushi was incredible. It was hands down the best we have had in Europe. We watched the skill of the kitchen and wait staff as they ran there busy Sat. night like a well oiled machine. Trey and I mumbled in between every bite about the flavorful sushi we were craving for almost 6 months. After the house graupa and amazing violet and green tea infused ice cream we decided it was time to turn in for the night.
It was Sunday morning and we stopped into a little cafe just down the street, for a glass of fresh squeezed oj, a cafe con leche y Baileys and tostado con tomate y jamon. It was a perfect way to start our morning. It's funny how when we get older how we spend our days. We used to love to stay up late and enjoyed being night owls and sleeping in, but now we both rather go to bed early and wake up early to enjoy the full day and are the most active in the morning. My Aunt June used to say, "mornings are the best time of the day." Then I thought she was crazy, now I very much agree.
We followed the cobble stone roads to the main tourist area where the Alcazar and Cathedral were. It was a gorgous day! As the horse drawn tours went by we felt right at home. We didn't reserve tickets in advance for the Alcazar so we waited in line for about 2 hours to enter. Despite the fact, Trey hates crowds and lines we both didn't mind waiting and watching the beautiful plaza outside of the Cathedral and Alcazar come to life. We had live music while we waited and the sun was shining keeping us nice and toasty. We shared a frozen lemonade and much to your surprise...took lots of pictures.
We finally made our way into the Alcazar and were very impressed the this amazing piece of Morrish influenced arctitecture. The details the this building were mind blowing. We often asked ourselves, How long do you think it took to create that small corner? Do you think they carved it into the building or carved it and mounted it up? The architecture and art we have seen on this trip amazes us. It truly is remarkable to see the time and details they put into there life long work.
Our favorite part of the Alcazar,and all of Seville for that matter,was the Alcazar Gardens. It was like a magical kingdom of natural beauty, with amazing water features, and lookouts where you could see the entire garden, and stare off into the distance for hours. We both sat on a bench by the peacocks for almost 30 minutes and said nothing. We just breathed it all in...It's moments like that I will cherish forever. Where we just soaked in all of our surrounding beauty, and enjoyed eachothers presence. After spending nearly 4 hours there it was time for us to head on to our next destination Plaza de España.
We walked from our place at one side of Seville to the center to the other side of Seville. It was perfect because we were able to cover the entire city in just 2 short days. We passed a park and a Terrance that was shaded by beautiful trees getting ready to blossum for spring. We said we would go back there for a snack and drink once we finished at Plaza De España. We reach our destination and we're in awe of it's beauty. It was like what you seen in the movies. Many people in a plaza surrounded by a beautiful piece of arcitrchure with a fountain in the middle and a park on the other. We enjoyed people watching here! As our stomachs began to growl and our months got dry we decided it was time for us to head to the terrace near the park for a snack and refreshment.
We ordered a bottle of cava and shared the oxtail tapas. It was just enough food to hold us over to our 10:00pm Spanish dinner time. We then walked down the riverfront viewing all the happy hour places coming to life on a hot late afternoon. We toured the Seville Bull Fighting Stadium and head back to our place for a siesta and shower before dinner.
We were ready for another night out and went to a restaurant our Airbnb owners recommended Arte y Sabor. It was a tapas bar and exactly what we were looking for. It had a variety of fusion tapas, so we went the tabuli, kufta, jamon asparagus, grilled goat cheese and pita route. Random but so good! It was delishious. We love tapas infusion because you can try many dishes share and still be full! We thought about venturing out for a night cap but decided against it because we had a big day planned for Monday and still had to travel back to Madrid.
It was Monday morning and Trey and I were heading to Córdoba for the afternoon to meet our friends Kiara and Rachael. They had stayed in Córdoba for the weekend and it was on the way home so we had to check it out. We left our Airbnb around nine thirty and took our luggage with us to the center where we parked our car. We sat at a little cafe outside and enjoyed a nice breakfast before our journey to Córdoba. We talked and wrote post cards and lost track of the time. We finally asked for the bill and realized we had been there for almost two hours. We got in the car and were Córdoba bound.
2 hours later we had arrived. Trey noticed a sign that said in Spanish permitted vehicles only, we ignored it and after about 30 sec. I wish I hadn't said, "oh we aren't parking we will be fine." Driving down cobblestone roads as narrow as our vehicle, I literally had to pull in the mirrors so they would not hit the wall so the buildings, and people walking all up and down these streets made for a very anxious Chelsea. Trey however kept his cool and drove on. He amazed me with his driving skills. While being here in Europe he has driven down many many old narrow roads, up impossible hills, down forbidden roads like a champion. I say this now and may regret saying this in the future, but my husband is a fantastic driver, and I will no longer be his passenger seat driver...just his trusty navigator. Much to your surprise while traveling we rarely ever argue about driving or directions while in a car. Maybe because this is the least used method of transportstion here in Europe, but it has made us stronger and a pretty good team!
Finally, we made it through the maze as we drove past the famous Masquita of Córdoba and parked our car in a public parking spot. We stopped at a little corner spot and shared some patas bravas, croquettes, and had a drink. The sun was beating down and again we couldn't have asked for better weather. We wondered to and fro down the streets of Córdoba and noticed the beautiful potted plants hanging all down the sides of the buildings. In May the city has a competition of who has the nicest patio, things were just starting to blossum, but I can imagine this to be absolutely gorgous time of year for the sweet little city of Córdoba.
We met up the Kiara and Rachael and walked around the Jewish quarter for a bit and went into a really neat ariboc tea shop. We all bought some tea and were ready for some more food. I know I know we eat alot don't we! Just keep in mind Spain is all about tapas so little tastes here and there. They girls took us to a place they were eyeing since they arrived. It was the cutest little restaurant with a gorgous open terrace in the middle of the restaurant. We enjoyed a veggie cous cous dish and amazing conversation. Kiara has such a wonderful way about her to make us all laugh. We were discussing the Plaza De Espana and told her we noticed on the wall of all the cities in Spain there was a city called Palencia. Kiara had to comment "Valencia and Palencia," she said in her Australian accent, " How odd to name cities in the same country so similar, it would be like naming a city Boo York after naming one New York." We laughed at her commentary and we will truly miss her humor when we return to the States.
After our meal we headed to where the girls had stayed for the weekend to collect there things. We headed to the car to load there things in our little fiatt 500, that Kiara was ever so excited about, and headed for one last look of Córdoba from the famous bridge. We walked along the bridge stopping to admire some Spanish guitar. As much as we all wanted to stay we had a long car ride back to Madrid ahead of us. We loaded up and headed back. We played an exciting a humorous game of 20 questions to keep us preoccupied as we waited in traffic for nearly an hour. We were all thinking outside of the box with our topic expect for Trey. With his first attempt of the game we all guessed his topic in less than 2 min. flat, his first truck, the Ford Ranger. I asked him to go again and to make it difficult. After 30 minutes of guessing he began to give us hints. When he said it was a Spanish word Kiara, part Spanish, was determined to figure it out. The hints were it was a feeling, it can be sexual, its a form of inspiration, and you cannot touch it. Just as we were about to give up he began to spell the first two letters I yelled out "Duerme?" Trey filled with excitement yelled out, "Yes!!" We all laughed hysterically saying really, Trey you are tired is sexual? He laughed and said," No, I thought you guessed it, it was Duende." He gave us the definition of duende which he had read in one of his books about Spain. Duende is a gypsy term used as the mysterious magical force, fairy like, that Spanish creative sprits obtain, which inspires the best of flamanco, His choice of 20 questions topic the second time around summed up our Seville trip rather nicely.
All in all we felt Seville to be a very charming city. The people, the culture, the architecture, the food, the weather were all components that made Seville one of our top 5 favorites thus far.
It's not everyday you get to spend time with one of your best friends in Europe, so when Maggie told me her and a friend were coming for a short 3 day visit, of course I began the planning. When they arrived I had made a cheese board for us to snack on and some cava to celebrate there arrival. We then headed to the Renia Sofia to see some Picasso and Dali. We stopped off at the corner for some coffee and recharge, and then we were ready for some art. After a nice afternoon in the museum we headed back to the house to get ready for dinner. I had been eyeing Jardin Secreto for dinner for some time, we passed it many times while we were out and about, so I made reservations for 10:00. Trey had been to the Athletic Madrid game with a friend, so we were all feeling right and in the spirit. When we arrived I gave the host my name as usual, Chelsea Stone, that is what you do when you make a reservation right? Well for some reason or another the Spaniards hear my name way differently, so the host responded back, " No sorry, No reserve for Chelsea... then less than a second later he says, "Oh espara, Sophia Estone?" The girls started laughing, and when I told them this wasn't the first time they said "well now you have an official Spanish name then... come on Sofia!" For the remainder for the trip they called me Sophia and from now on when making reservations while in Spain I have learned if can't beat em join em...Sophia Estone it is! The ambiance was fantastic the food was different and good, but nothing I would write home about, except for the carrot cake and delish chocolate cake we ordered for dessert. It seems that was what you go to Jardin Secreto for...the dessert and fun cocktails. We then set out for an after dinner drink at Dry Bar 1892. We each enjoyed our own speciality cocktail and caught up on life.
I woke up at my usual time to go to work and was back before they woke up. I had made brunch reservations at one of my favorite little secrets here in Madrid that is above a store and has a private courtyard terrace. Everything about this place is just too cute from the place mats, the ambiance, to the little coin pouch shaped as little pastries that the bring your bill in. We had much comical relief when we began to hear American pop music in the background sung by what we thought was one of those Now CDs volume 8. After an awesome brunch we walked around Sol and headed to Plaza Mayor. After a quick mini tour Trey and I had to head to work, so we left the girls to navigate Madrid on there own. They had a wonderful afternoon getting lost around the city shopping and having afternoon refreshments.
When I got home that evening we went went to Temple De Debod to watch the sunset. We walked back to the house for a "dress drink" and we're in an uber on our way to a Flamanco dinner show. We had arrived fairly early so we enjoyed watching the restaurant fill up. I explained to them that the last time Trey and I were there, we were also the first to show up because the Spanish are always late. The dinner was very good and we all enjoyed a few bottles of wine. The show was excellent, and Crystal the dancer of the group, was very moved by one of the performers. After the show we headed out to look for one more drink before heading home. We got scooped up in a tourist trap, but honestly it was kind of fun. He offered us 3 free drinks and free entry if we followed him. We thought... hey why not when in Spain right? When we entered the bar some modern music was playing the it was your typical club scene. We each got a drink and hopped on the dance floor. We stayed for about an hour and then I had to get to bed because I had to work the next morning. We got back around 2:30am and I saw a really cool cabnet on the side of the road we all took a good look at it to make sure it was ligit and before I knew it, Maggie and Crystal in there high heels, were carrying this cabnet up the stairs.
As I directed them telling them where the next step was, I flew open our apartment door to find Trey up and watching TV. He definitely wasn't expecting us to be coming in with a piece of furniture. We all finally settled down and fell asleep.
After waking up at 6:30am again for work, after not going to bed until nearly 3:30am I was beat, so I took a small nap while Trey made the girls homemade tortilla. It was a perfect way to soak up the booze we had the night before. Raquel gave me the afternoon off so the girls and I planned to go to Toledo for the day. We went to the train station and took a 30 min train to Toledo.
We found our way to the city center and enjoyed seeing an old Spanish town with a true Spanish feel, away from the big city. We stopped off at a cute cafe for some lunch and wine and we were feeling great. We wondered through the streets of Toledo and snuck into some cute stores to do some suvienere shopping. I will talk more about Toledo in another post when Trey and I have made the journey together. It is such a neat city and so close to us we can take mutiple trips. It was time for us to head back to Madrid so we made our way down the city bridge which was stunning all lite up at night, back to the train station. Once we got back to Madrid we made our way to a roof top bar for one last parting drink.
It was a shot trip but ever so sweet! I am so glad I got to share a taste of what Trey and I's life is like here abroad with one of my dear friends.
In the the last few hours of my Friday classes last week I unusually preoccupied because I knew there were friends in town and Chelsea was taking them around Madrid without me. Robert, a childhood friend, had just sent me a picture of he and Cash playing with a caption saying, “waiting for daddy to get home”. I had also watched Chelsea prepare the iberian ham, olives, cheese and bread board earlier that I was sure they were getting into. There was also a few nice bottles of Spanish wine waiting on them I was positive they were savoring. All of this was true but I still had to finish my work before I could play!
Fast forward to 10:15PM as I opened the door to our apartment when I found the crew laughing and having a good time playing with Cash just as I was suspecting. Robert and I embraced in a big bro-hug and the weekend with the Georgens finally began for me. I took a moment to catch up with everyone and then off we went to our long anticipated dinner reservations at Casa Mono. As we were walking it was great to catchup on what the day had brought our fellow Ex-pats, who are from Charleston spending time in Spain as well. They went to Temple Debod, took a ride on the Teleferico, walked Cash in Parque de Oeste, and got back to the apartment to talk and wait on me.
We walked into the restaurant and knew instantly we picked the right spot. The bustling Friday night Madrid crowd is out and as we look at the posh decorations and vibrant atmosphere we are whisked to our table to begin yet another fine dining experience with our friends. Casa Mono, Robert says, means “monkey house.” I hadn’t thought about it but he was right. No problem getting our drink order in because how could we go wrong with the house Rioja? We exchanged Spanish and English menus back and forth and decided how we wanted to break the meal up. We then proceed to order and then continued to catch up on the present and have Robert enlighten Chelsea on stories about our childhood and BC (Before Chelsea). Our dinner and two bottles of wine were fantastic and we decided that it was too early for us to go to bed and so we opted to Uber to the local music joint El Junco for some late night entertainment. We arrived and I was pleasantly surprised that there was not too many people in the relatively small dive. The band was rocking! It was a blues band that could have been from the United States. They reminded me of Johnny Mack and the Booty Ranch from back in Charleston, SC. They played some great blues standards, Jimi Hendrix, Mad Dog, and by the time we left had the entire bar dancing all around. Some of the best live music we have seen yet in Madrid! We could have stayed up all night with the rest of the Madrios but we had a big day planned the next day… A chance to fulfill a boyhood dream of Robert and myself’s and go see a Real Madrid futbol match!
When we woke up everyone was a little slow. Its funny how you have so much energy when you first get together catching up running on pure adrenaline. I was the first up to get my day going and was soon told I was making too much noise. Robert knew exactly how to handle the situation and tells me he wants some American coffee and we should go find some. It is the first time to Starbucks in Europe and it is different and yet nostalgic of home all in the same time. We get our American coffees to go and sat outside watching Madrid wakeup. We caught up and had great guy time acknowledging it is pretty cool two guys from Charleston, SC to be sitting in Europe on a fine winter’s day. Life is good!
When we got back to the house the girls were up and at em. Breakfast was ready and we made some pregame bloody mary’s (All the way from Indiana courtesy of Katie and Charlie) to go with the quiche Chelsea made. Lo and behold, he had yet another feast. Our timing was good and we were ready to head to the stadium, so with tickets in hand off we went. I was as excited as getting ready for another Gamecock football game in Columbia, SC.
We got to the stadium through metro with ease and started to find our way to our side of the stadium. We snapped some photos and browsed the souvenir stands and the official Real Madrid store. Still I am not sure how our tickets are going to be and am pleasantly surprised to see that they are amazing. We were behind the goal about forty rows up and the stadium is massive and starting to fill up. We took it all in and that took us some time. The beating of the drums, the warming up of the players, the fans getting to their seats, the buzz in the air were all quite a spectacle for the soccer fans from across the pond. We finally get situated in our seats and off we go. We watched the warm ups and we find the big name players as they get ready. When the starting lineup was announced the crowd went wild. It really is great to see the game live. The match moved so much faster and there was so much more interesting things to watch besides just the game. Real scored a goal on our side and everyone got so excited. The fans were also unforgiving to the referee if he didn't make a call in their favor and made as much noise complaining as celebrating on quite a few occasions. Then in the second half Garreth Bale was substitued in to return to the field for the first time since October 2016. He quickly makes his presence known and scored the second goal in the second half on the other side of the field in only seven minutes after getting in the game. Wow! Once the exciting game drew to a close it was concluded that a good time was had by all. Robert and I got to watch our big game together and the girls thoroughly enjoyed themselves as well.
As we roll out of the stadium we tell Robert and Suzanna their surprise for the weekend. We had Raquel, Chelsea’s employer, make reservations at a restaurant that overlooks the stadium. We had some time before they opened so we took a moment to get a coffee and a pastry at a local shop and then relax in the stadium shopping mall for a few minutes. We were in typical American fashion in Spain and are the first in the restaurant. We got a drink at the bar and then were taken to our seat overlooking the stadium. From our seats we were given another moment to marvel at the amazing field and stadium while we enjoyed a very Spanish meal. Suzanne and I split a seafood rice, Chelsea had the meatballs, and Robert the ox tail. No late night music or late night at all for that matter this time as everyone was exhausted. We were ready to party in the bed tonight and by party I mean sleep.
The last full day for the Georgens in Madrid was a sightseeing day. Chelsea and I enjoy taking people out because it gives us a chance to see more of our city we have grown quite familiar and fond of and also gives us a chance to see more. We started at a nice brunch place called Roll and had a typical American brunch and good craft beers. We then moved onto the highlight of the day the modern art museum the Sofia Reina. It is the coolest museum in Madrid in my opinion as we seem to prefer modern art. We only got to see the second floor but did see all of the really popular works. If you go on Sundays you get in free and it would have been worth the admission but free is even better!
We then hopped in a cab to see the Madrid Palace, a place Chelsea and I have walked by often but not been into. When we got there the palace was closed for a special event that was not shown online but still with it being such a gorgeous day it didn’t matter and we enjoyed the outdoors and sat between the palace and cathedral and took in the sunshine, listed to a man play his violin, and took a few pics before deciding to walk back home. It was such great weather and we continued to walk until we decided to keep going down Gran Via instead of going home. We ended up in Sol and walked around the busy streets being tourists for a day. For a mid-afternoon treat we took Robert and Suzanna to get Churros at a famous churro cafe in Sol. We ate those scruptious churros after dipping them in the fine chocolate until we had our fill and then headed to Plaza Mayor. When we got to Plaza Mayor we had a pleasant surprise. Chelsea grabbed me by the arm and said she thinks she found our first art piece of this trip. We have been looking everywhere and nothing has caught our eye yet that we can afford. That was until we met Max. Max had an original color canvas painting of Gran Via in Callo by the Swchepes building on the Capital side looking out over the street. This is only about 1 km away from our apartment and we had been down the street numerous times. The picture was just right and we made the decision to go for it and we now have our first European piece hanging in our apartment.
We got home and put up the picture and took a rest for a minute and then went to find some good Indian food. We had a great meal with great company and then went home to again call it a night after another full day.Up and ready to take the Georgens to the train station. I navigated them through the metros and sent them off with big hugs and nothing but smiles.
We had a great trip with you Robert and Suzanna and you are welcome back anytime. It is so good to spend time with a great friend and catchup in an amazing country after not seeing each other for over ten years. Salude!
We were to be at MU at 8PM. We have run late with Andy and Roxanna before and we didn’t want to mess it up this time. We arrived ten minutes early and they were already seated and waiting on us… and we realized there is at least one couple in Madrid that doesn't run on Spanish time! We were greeted by the owner and feel very welcomed. This Argentinian restaurant off Grand Via in the busy shopping district of Madrid is small and cozy and we were made to feel like celebrities as soon as we walked in quite an awesome feeling if I do say so myself. The celebrity treatment had more to do with Andy and Rox than us and that was because they are from Uruguay, so they know good Argentinian food and frequent the establishment. Roxanna helped us with the ordering and after we put our order in we continued on with a wonderful evening.
The food was fantastic! Fresh empanadas, tasty salad, warm bread, then a mouthwatering steak with fries. We finished with a little sweet, and I ordered the flan and Roxanna talked them into putting some dulce de leche on the side, which is extremely popular in Uruguay, on the house. If you ever get the chance to try dulce de leche do it, you won't be disappointed! We finished our meal, settled with the owner, said our goodbyes, and are whisked out the door with hugs and kisses all around. Once we turned around the table was ready for the next set of guests being welcomed in. What a great restaurant with amazing food and great owners! We will return, thanks Mu!
We were then off to the next part of our double date, karaoke! We got to Cher's Karaoke Bar which has some real cool retro gear like an old gas pump, a car couch, and a Spanish looking James Dean statue propping himself on the wall by the bar. We got settled into our reserved car couch and found our songs to sing. We put our songs in and Roxanna bought us a round of drinks. We were enjoying our time together and the energy in the bar was really happy. It was fun to listen to Spanish karaoke as they like songs that aren't even remotely known or popular in the US. Some of the songs had never been heard by Roxanna, who is a native of Uruguay and native Spanish speaker, and the Spaniard patrons were all singing in unison together like it was a number one on the chart that day. Andy got up first and rocked out an excellent AC/DC song and then we waited and waited more. Almost two hours later Chelsea's song comes up and we sang "Wild Horses" together. We got a great ovation either because we are finally finished or because they liked it, and then we exited the bar.
As we walked down the road we continued our great conversation with our two friends. We feel so lucky to have met Andy and Roxana here in Madrid and feel that every person we encounter on this journey is for a reason. We are looking forward to more exciting nights with our fellow expat friends.