When I left from Stockholm I couldn’t hardly be more excited for my next stop. All my clothes were finally washed again, I was re-energized and I was finally getting on the lag of the trip that would actually involve some warm sunny weather. Unfortunately when I hopped off the plane in Madrid, I was welcomed by a not so pleasant surprise…
I got off the plane and immediately felt the warmer air getting in my lungs. Finally I could take of my hundred layers and with my winter coat in my arm I walked up to the luggage belt excited for my next 5 days in Madrid. I waited, and waited, then I got myself some coffee and waited a little more, not ready to face the facts. My backpack (with all the before mentioned beloved clean clothes) did not arrive in Madrid with me. Now normally I would be bummed but it wouldn’t be a disaster because I always bring an extra set of clothes in my carry on, and at least to pairs of underwear + a toothbrush, always. always. Except of course, this time.
It took about two hours at the airport to report my missing bag (with me understanding but not speaking a word of Spanish and them not understanding my English) and by the time I got to the hostel I was dead, frustrated and I had lost all excitement to be honest. But here’s the thing about travelers, they’re kinda cool and stick together. I got to talking to two girls from the states and after venting a bit about what happened they kindly took me under their wing and we went out for dinner. Nothing like good food (endless tapas) and sangria to forget about silly troubles.
The next morning another sweet gal offered me her shower gel and we ended up wandering around the city the whole day. We walked everywhere we could and kept snapping away until my battery died and that was that for the photos. The next days I spent a fortune on trying to call the airlines to figure out where my bag was. I bought a couple of shirts, underwear and pants and tried to make most of my time in this city I’d never been before. Luckily, Caroline was on her way to Madrid as well and having her around made life about a million times better. Her sister’s friend, Becca, let us stay with her and made us feel right at home. We saw a lot of the city (which is so big) ate lots of tapas, saw a real flamingo show and enjoyed the warmth as much as we could. I actually really fell in love with the city as there was just so much to discover and the people were really nice.
I’d be lying if I said that not having any of my own things was easy one me. I got more and more frustrated by the day and though I was hopeful to get my stuff back within three days, after day 5 I was done. From Madrid I was supposed to go on to Valencia and to Italy from there but I couldn’t afford to keep on buying new clothes and things I needed, plus my mood had gotten a serious beating. I wanted to go home more than anything. So I cut my travels short, booked a ticket and the next day I landed back in the Netherlands, feeling quite defeated.
But we’re not at the end of this journey just yet. I had one more ticket, one more city to explore and a couple of days at home to prep for it. Curious where I was going? Here’s a tip; we had pasta for days. But thats a story for a next post!