Don't even think about doing it - Madrid in five hours. This city deserves so much more attention. But there I was, on this beautiful december day with a five hours to kill in Madrid. It was perfect, I had never been there before, and there was time left between the arrival of my airplane and the time that my train would leave at the train station. And so I went for it.
First of all, why did I have five hours to kill in Madrid? Well, I was on my way from Bordeaux to Pamplona. Any sane person with a geographical idea of where those two places are would say that it's kind of illogical to fly to Madrid to later on the day take the train to Pamplona, but for some reason it was actually cheaper to do it this way, plus I would have the opportunity to see something of Madrid. Plus, overall, the total time in a moving verhicule would be about the same time.
When I got of the plane in Madrid, the first thing I heard at the airport was Dutch. It was a strange experience, I don't really expect it anymore. In Bordeaux there are barely any Dutch people; in my past three months here I've seen a total of one Dutch car in the city. Maybe it's because it's been autumn, and Bordeaux is not so much warmer than autumn in the Netherlands. I walked through the enormous hall; following the signs to the metro. The day before, I had figured out all the places to go to with my friend Marcos, who actually is from Madrid. In my mind I had connected all these places to make a logical route, starting from the Gran Vía, to Plaza Puerta del Sol and then to Palacio Real. It was the 28th of December, and it was so warm; I had to rest. The gardens next to the palace were simply perfect. The Sabatini gardens are beautiful and quiet; perfect for reading a book or just to enjoy the weather.
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