Monday, 28 October 2013

Easy like Sunday mañana


Bottoms up, bottoms up

Like a bunch of cool cosmopolitan capitals, Sunday is the day to get a true flavour of the city's spirit. I took full advantage of Europe's bonus hour (in case you're late to the party: the CLOCKS WENT BACK!) and hopped out early to the mother of all Madrid mercados, El Rastro. You only need to shuffle out of La Latina metro station to be hit hard by the wave of buzzy, spirited Sunday souls wheeling and dealing their little culos [asses] off. 





Definitely not for the claustrophobic, El Rastro is redolent of muy high waters with its forceful current of bargain hunting bodies. I, of course, found myself moving against the turbulent tide of market goers, which proved a bit...awkward. Still, what's a flea market without a spot of shoving and paranoid possession protecting? Not a proper flea market, that's what. 

Totally legit.
A taste of home amid Madrilenian madness; surreal. 
Catching my sunglass-wearin' reflection in the myriad medley of gafas de sol [sunglasses], I couldn't help but smile a little as I was reminded of the classic opening sequence of Labyrinth of Passion (yet another act of Almodóvar brilliance), a film that totally encapsulates the crazy, labyrinthine nature of Madrid's animated bartering hotspot. In case I've lost ya - TADA! - this is the very shot:


It's kinda tricky to mooch methodically through the tangled web of stalls, but to me there's something quite mesmerising, almost hypnotising about this renowned retail jungle. And I had no problems in coming away with a very satisfying haul of low-cost and lovely trinkets. 


Maybe it was the 1€ paella, or perhaps the extremely lush weather (I lost count of how many times I heard squeals of "¡qué calor!"), but everyone seemed to be on another level of chilled contentment. It was super infectious. So as I was serenely floating around the surrounding calles [streets], absorbing the zen-like vibes pervading the plazas, I found some a-ma-zing antique, "junk" (emphasis on the inverted commas), and furniture shops. I was more than happs to locate LA Studio on Calle Arganzuela, home to some of the most unique, chic and beautifully designed furniture I've EVER SEEN. I left reallyreallyreally wanting my own little studio apartment to kit out (and lots of monies to permit me to do so, obviously). 

The rice, sorry, price is so right. 
 

Further gems to be unearthed in the Calle Arganzuela ends included heaps of character-filled cocktail and cerveza spots, almost intimidatingly crowded with merrymaking madrileños and extranjeros [foreigners] alike. And in my subtle (not so subtle) attempts to people watch through dark shades, I clocked some pretty cool street style too. 
Yeah, I see you

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