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Another strike?

Handful of men in green vests with signs and a bullhorn. "Madrid en peligro" -- Madrid in danger. "Bomberos bajo mínimos" -- firefighters low minimum??

Men in dress uniform standing on a street, why? Oh, probably because they're next to the Naval Museum. Which has a sign in English and... Chinese.

At Prado, though wondering if I should be given good weather and rain tomorrow. Zoo'd be good but I forgot to look up where it is. Long slow line for special Renoir... Kind of slow for the permanent collection too. Oh hey, I asked a tourist with a map where the zoo was, and he just gave me the map. Mine only cover Metro or the central area. But since I'm right by the Parque del Retiro, let's do that.

Prado has free admission for legally unemployed EU citizens, and EU citizens in "large families". Also families with one adult and 3+ children, or 2+ where one is disabled.

Huge park. Very ordered and geometric, English hedge garden not Golden Gate urban pseudo-wilderness. Some cypress trees that either grow very oddly or have been trimmed oddly. It's definitely fall, at least for some of the trees here; lots of red dead leaves around and falling as I watch. There's a small cat in a fenced off area. Big rectangular boat pond. Jamón sandwich. Another cat -- I'm no expert but neither looks in a bad way.

Crystal Palace area looks more natural.

Rosalea. Sounds like a rose garden, is a rose garden. A rather large one, with a very broad range of roses, some of which smell heavenly.

An avenue west of the park is lined with used book stands.

Botanic gardens. Cheap! And with a black cat. Squirrels and rabbits I don't see, cats (and magpies) I do.

Me: "Donde esta aqui?" Pointing at map.
Her: "I'm sorry, I don't speak any Spanish."
Me: "Oh. Do you know where are on this map?"

Greenhouses! Not huge, I think IU's are bigger, never mind Glasgow's. But the first such I've seen with stairs taking you to a high walkway. Well, not counting various zoo or museum rain forests.

Reading The Confusion in breaks. Pepys just made a prayer about urinating. Rather funny, as was an earlier scene with the Liberation of the Monkeys.

Took my first bus here! Had to be shown how to use my pass, but it saved a lot of walking back to my hotel where my bag is.

Food: being in the park meant missing the mediodia meal, so I've been on fruit and a light sandwich in the park. Found a place open at 5 though, ordering tomatoes and Iberico ham (and bread), and Catalan sausage with fried potatoes (French fries) and ali-oli sauce. I was finally brought dispensers of olive oil and vinegar.

Rosetta risks: they're not always rigorous in their translations. When "con patatas" is "with potatoes" on one line and blank on another they're just being lazy. But the English menu here has "Fried 'chistorra' sausage"; in Spanish it's "chistorra al infierno flambeada al brandy". My dictionary just translates infierno as "hell". Further down, anchovies and big holes (??) becomes "matrimonio de anchoas y boquerones". Some idiom being left behind, there...

The sausage is all right, nothing for me to get excited about (I go for Italian and/or hot and not too greasy, insofar as one can ask that of sausage.) Too much meat in this diet, a few more good salads and bread wouldn't be amiss.

Feels like a busier and more filled day. Up earlier, no siesta, lots of walking. Days like this I could almost see sticking around longer.

Off to my new lodging, will post this while I know I have hotel wifi.


( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 29th, 2010 04:53 pm (UTC)
"Bomberos bajo mínimos"

... more like "below the minimum". Maybe they're not getting paid enough, or there aren't enough of them?
Oct. 29th, 2010 05:45 pm (UTC)
Yeah, both make sense, but either way I suspect it's shorthand for something more grammatical.

Some optimistic desperation use of Google "Translate this page" suggests it's more the latter, or even about their equipment. Old trucks, not enough, maybe not enough firefighters... resources below minimum rather than wages, yeah.
Oct. 29th, 2010 05:51 pm (UTC)
It doesn't sound ungrammatical to my non-native ears, FWIW. Maybe informal.
Oct. 29th, 2010 05:54 pm (UTC)
"More meaningful" would be better, perhaps.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )


Damien Sullivan

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