Dan and Stan in Madrid

Last weekend my sister came over with one of Dani’s two younger cousins. Before Roberto was born Stanley was the only one of the cousins younger than Dani. Stan is fast approaching his fourth birthday and this was his first trip on a plane with his new (first) passport.

 The weather was unseasonably warm which meant we were able to spend a lot of time outdoors. Stan’s mum wanted to go around the city centre. And Stan? Well: He neither knew nor cared. But there was bound to be plenty to see in the centre. So off we went.

Plaza del Sol

The Puerta del Sol – or simply “Sol”, as any Madrileño would say – was where we headed. The epicentre of the city and as usual it was crowded. There are usually some costumed entertainers trying to make some money by dressing up as famous characters and getting tips for posing for photographs. Not only with tourists. Some are quite good. Some are funny. Worth the money they make. You can usually tell these from a distance as they tend to be surrounded by people taking selfies or being photographed.

Child’s Play???

But wait. Hello! Who was this guy? Moving around the busy plaza with everyone giving him a wide berth. I wonder why?

Yes, your eyes do not deceive you. This freaking nut job was none other than Chucky, the demonic doll from the Child’s Play series of horror movies. Complete with a frickin knife !!

Does scaring the kids with a (fake) knife really make this crazy psycho money? Probably it’s the teenagers that go for that insane selfie with a possessed knife-wielding toy. ‘Each to their own’ as the saying goes…


As it was so sunny my sister decided to buy the boys a new pair of sunglasses. Looking cool boys.

Looking cool in their new shades with their Nana – who is also looking cool.

After a fairly long walk around the centre we made it back home via the metro. Before we got there Stan was already asleep.

A Day at the Races

Sunday was the first day of the horse racing season so we headed for the Hipódromo de la Zarzuela – the race track just outside Madrid. From now until December 1st these events will take place once a week (usually a Sunday) – with a short break in August.

The kids were excited to be going to see the horses. But we were running late.

In fact we had missed at least half of the races by the time we were pulling off the motorway junction. Yet for some odd reason so was everyone else. It seemed that there were lots of others making it just in time for the last half of the races. That’s a peculiar thing in Spain that I still do not understand. In the UK people would never do that. They would get there early to ensure seeing all the races or not bother. In Spain people do not seem to mind turning up late. One day I may get it…

The main thing was that the kids enjoyed the event and even managed to get close to the action.

Now I know gambling is illegal for kids – and of course we did not allow it – but they did try to study the form in the paddock. It got them close to the horses. Neither of them picked a winner though but both had enjoyed the day out.

Two cousins carefully studying the horses before a race.

The races finished but we hung around a while. As did many others. Maybe that’s why so many turned up “late”? It was really just an afternoon outdoors with a couple of races beforehand. Ok, maybe I get it a little now…


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