Yesterday morning, we left the hotel in Santiago de Compostela at 4:45 am and arrived in the Madrid apartment at 9:30 am. Camillo went back to bed for a nap and I walked to the Prado/botanical gardens. I wanted to re-take the photos I did in 'RAW' mode last week. I was concerned that I will never figure out how to save those photos and thought it best to try again.
It took me 45 minutes to walk down to the museum. I didn't get lost exactly. I was taking photos of the buildings along the way and just went walking a bit out of my way before I realized I wasn't on the same street anymore. The streets here are like a series of circles, interlocking like cogs on a gear, if you don't go fully around to the other side of the circle, (which is usually a nice fountain or statue that you need a photo of), you end up changing your direction. ANYWAY, I found a sign post with an arrow pointing me the right direction so I was never lost. You have to remember that I need the extra exercise, so I felt good about going for a little out of my way.
The botanical garden here is just as good as Rio's. Rio's is more of a nature walk, natural settings and Madrid's is a formal French garden setting. In Madrid's garden, the Dahlias were at the end of their bloom, but I was still able to find a few fresh blossoms. Some of those above, the white one in particular, were the size of footballs. Fantastic! Madrid also has the better green house than Rio. It is divided into 3 sections, tropical rain forest, subtropical and desert. I was in the tropical forest when the afternoon 'rains' came, I had to protect my camera but managed to catch the end of the misting humidity.
If anyone has interests in more cactus, tell me and I will send separate desert photos. I never realized the variations of cactus - and I was raised in Arizona where the gardens are made up of succulents.
My walked back to the apartment was only 15 minutes, getting back in plenty of time for a rest with my feet up before Camillo was ready for lunch.
I have loads more to say but don't want to put anyone to sleep so will stop now.
We leave tomorrow morning and will be back in Rio by Monday evening rush hour. I will have class on Tuesday and Wednesday then we will return to Nova Friburgo for a long weekend. I look forward to getting home - this means it has been a perfect vacation.