If this is your first visit then ¡Bienvenido! You’ll find endless information about Life in Spain, Spanish food, travel in Spain, our famous Spain podcasts, and even learning Spanish, at our sister site Notes in Spanish.
Two great new Spain blogs worth checking out.
The first is Spain by Mike Randolph. Mike is a professional photographer and writer, and this is a great place to learn a lot about Spain and Spanish Culture.
The second is a joint project between me and my friend John, who lives in Asturias. It’s about making time to get away from the computer screen and out into the world: Making Time To Live
…is up to you, only up to you, and not up to anyone else. Look after yourself, do things you like, love yourself (and other people will love you more as a result)
…means being peaceful
..is about stopping a lot
…is about realising all the reasons you already have to be happy
…is about giving up ideas about things you don’t have or aren’t doing that you are convinced will make you happier when you are already actually quite happy as it is
…is about giving more to get more
…is living in the present, not the past, not the future
…is about positivity
…is getting out and about
…is getting unstuck
…is moving, but not striving
…is just relaxing and not trying too hard
…is saying, OK, why not, that should be interesting
…is letting go
…is realising all crises are impermanent (and so is everything else)
…is listening to the birds, or the wind in the trees
…is walking up a new hill
…is giving the person you are with all your attention
…is thinking I was writing this post on another
secret (no longer secret) ‘in the works’ blog project of mine, then suddenly realising I am writing the draft post here on Notesfromspain.com by mistake instead, and deciding to publish it here anyway. I’ll add a pretty photo to the top too, of the super-happy guy who skates around the statue of the devil in the Retiro park. Hopefully the photo or the words will make someone happier. Maybe I’ll explain all the points one by one on my the new blog if anyone is interested. Or here. There are no mistakes after all! Un abrazo, Ben
What makes YOU happy?
One from my photo archives – Cadiz old town is one of the most intriguing places in Spain, it transports you to different eras at every turn. Go and see it some time!
Over at Notes in Spanish: More Photos, and Fun Spanish Food and Snacks Vocab
He may have a bit of mud to contend with, but have you seen his view? Only in Asturias…
And a gentle trot down the track brings him to the magnificent Playa de Cuevas del Mar. Lucky Cow.
Three years ago I wrote, or spoke, a follow up to my book Errant In Iberia. It’s an audiobook, that I sold on this site for a while. I’ve decided to open it up again, this time for free download. If you listen, do leave a comment and let me know what you think of it. I haven’t actually listened to it again since recording it, and many things have changed since then – perhaps it’s time I wrote or spoke another sequel!
This post contains the original “Madrid Confessions” download files and bonuses.
Step 1: Download The Audio
Download your “Madrid Confessions” Audiobook in the format you prefer:
Version to use with iPods/iPhone (includes chapters bookmarks):
Normal mp3 version for use with other players:
(Right-click on the links ’save link as/save target as/download link’ to download the audio to your desktop. Once on your desktop you can listen to the audio on your computer or pass it to your mp3 player or iPod.)
Step 2: Get the Bonuses
Bonus 1: ‘Marina Confiesa’
For the Spanish learners and aficionados amongst you, Marina and I also recorded a special short Spanish podcast, ‘Marina Confiesa’, in which Marina revealed her own confessions!
To download this special Spanish audio, use this link:
To get the transcript, use this link:
(Right-click on the links ’save link as/save target as/download link’ to download the audio/transcript to your desktop. Once on your desktop you can listen to the audio on your computer or pass it to your mp3 player or iPod.)
And if you don’t know it yet, there’s lots more real Spanish audio like this at Notes in Spanish!
Madrid Confessions – Photos
Here are some photos that go with the narrative of The Madrid Confessions…
First of all, the pink flat from chapter 2, here as it was when in the hands of the previous owners…
… what we did to it soon after purchase!
Here is the bottom of the plaza near the Bernabeu stadium (seen behind) where the horrible scenes nearly occured in Chapter 6:
And here is a view of the run-down bullring near Toledo where the ‘Hemmingway’ events took place (with the bar at the top of the stands at the back):
Below is me with my Royal Enfield in India (Chapter 7). The organisers of the ride insisted we wore this protective motorcross body armour, which is a very sensible idea given the terrain and driving conditions in India, but made us look ridiculous compared to the local riders who went around in flip-flops!
And an example of the meditative, mesmerizing landscapes we rode past:
There’s more on that trip in my Enduro India podcast.
One more podcast you may enjoy is ‘The Institute of Cold‘ – it’s another story from recent years here in Madrid that could well have been a chapter in ‘The Madrid Confessions’. (This story was read from a script, unlike The Madrid Confessions).
Saludos from Madrid,
From woodland near Arriondas… though almost any pathway in Asturias will turn up beautiful things like this at this time of year.
Check out Spain Expert and Pro-Photographer Mike Randolph’s excellent Spain site www.spainbymikerandolph.com
Photo – Madrid’s Retiro Park
It’s still unseasonably sunny here – I mean it’s sunny every day, hardly a cloud in the sky – no snow this year. That was one of the things that most impressed me about Madrid when I first moved here 13 years ago, opening the curtains in the morning (or the shutters, to be more precise), and seeing bright blue skies, rather than the grey gloom I’d been used to for 3 years of London winters previously.