Monday, November 26

Gumbo Ya Ya

Kate and me

Andres, Kate, Me, Enrique and Domingo


The thanksgiving feast complete with a 4kilo roasted turkey, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce and stuffing.

Thomas, Paco and a girl whose name I´ve forgotten.

Thomas, Paco and the turkey before reheating it.

In comparison to Thomas, the turkey looks like a chicken. I think he´s like 6´6¨

Katie and her friend visiting from San Francisco

The half-eaten turkey

Me, Katie, Angela, Kate and her friend

Paco, Thomas, a friend of Paco´s and Angelo (This was Paco and his friend´s first thanksgiving dinner)

Kate and her friend

Devendra Concert

So I bit my lip and bought the 27€ ticket to see Devendra Banhart in Madrid. I didn´t have to go alone either, Keith was nice enough to join me even though he wasn´t very familiar with the artist. The venue was nice, could have been a little smaller though. It was at a place called Joy Eslava right in the center of the city. It was about the size of the Boulder Theater or for those of you in San Diego the Belly Up, it had lots of balcony space though so just imagine those venues with a lot more height. The music was grand and his new album which I bought just a couple weeks before the concert is phenomenal. A really great mix of music, he really experimented with new sounds and melodies. I recommed you all listen to some it on his website, i think it´s just The only problem was that it was really packed so it was kinda hard to get a good view of the band and be comfortable. Since Devendra grew up in Venezuela he was able to speak to the crowd in Spanish, he was very warm and friendly and the crowd loved him. After the show I bought a cool t-shirt that the man himself designed. It was well worth the money.

Sunday, November 18

New Blog!

I love Madrid and I love eating. I've thus decided to combine my loves and write a blog about them. I will post about the restaurants and tapas bars in Madrid and give a critical review of them, complete with pictures of dishes and interiors/exteriors. The blog site is (a la plancha means grilled). I'm very excited to start!

A little romance

So it seems I´ve found a little romance here in Madrid. I met Enrique at one of Carlos´ parties about three weeks ago. I didn´t even meet him at the party but rather on the walk to Art Deco. At one point I brought up the Blues club I´ve been frequenting rather regularly and he got very excited. He then mentioned that he spent a year studying English in Louisiana several years ago and has been longing to hear some familar souther music. We then made plans to go hear some live Blues together. He couldn´t make it the following week due to his conflicting work schedule but managed to make it the next Tuesday. There were about five of us that night and the french blues band played a fantastic set. Enrique was overjoyed. We made great conversation and made plans to see each other again soon. So November 12 we had our first ¨date¨ in which he cooked me a fantastic salmon dinner, afterwards we listened to a great new cd I got and made nice conversation. We had such a good time actually that we made plans to meet up again the following night. We decided to go to Shooters to play pool and enjoy a couple of pints, I won the first game but he quickly stole the glory by winning the following three. Afterwards we shared nachos and margaritas at a little Mexican restaurant on Fuencarral called Las MaƱanitas. The food was surprisingly tasty, very similar to what you would find in San Diego. Anyway, he´s very sweet and we´ve been having a lot of fun together. He´s traveling to Brussels this week so we spent most of this weekend together. He´s a bit older than I am (30) and has a real job (lawyer) but we have a lot in common and I find him very easy to spend time with. The best part about it is that he´s Spanish and even though he speaks English quite well, he always insists we speak Spanish together. It´s been great practice for me. I´ll keep you all posted on where this goes.

My Birthday Bash

Kate and me at Siam

I really had a great birthday. Since I worked until 5pm my party didn't really start until the evening. At school though my students sang me happy birthday in the classroom and then I heard it again during lunch from the teachers... it was very sweet. I got home around 6, cleaned my apartment, bought some booze for the party and flowers for the apartment then dolled myself up. At 9:30 my good friend Kate and I met up at a beautiful Thai restaurant called Siam that I'd been reading a lot about lately. We drank exotic rum cocktails and ate some delicious Pad Thai and Thai Basil Chicken, a great contrast to the rather bland and heavy Spanish cuisine we'd been eating so much of. At dinner we met two friendly guys from Sevilla who were sitting next to us. We liked them so much we insited they come to our party. They were delighted and agreed to head over once they finished dinner. Kate and I then got to my apartment around 10:30, just the time when peoplemy guests started showing up. Keith, by the way, was out of town, attending a conference in Barcelona. So there were about 12 of us in all (including the Sevilla guys who showed up). Everyone sang me Happy Birthday and I realy felt as though I was surrounded by old friends. Around 2am we went out to a little club called Siroco, it was reggae night... really cool and casual. We spent the night drinking and dancing to some great music. It was wonderful, really couldn't have turned out any better. My only mistake was that I didn't take enough pictures, I should have given the task to someone else, I was just too busy chatting and dancing. I have a few more photos to post... should be up tomorrow.

Kate and Me at my house party

New Woody Allen movie

Last week, Keith and I saw Cassandra´s Dream, the new movie from Woody Allen. I don´t think it has come out in the states yet because it is a British film and is making its way around Europe first. It was excellent though. The cast includes Ewan McGreggor, Tom Wilkinson, and Colin Farrell. Everyone gives a fantastic performance and the story is immensely suspensful. It is a sort of crime drama, think Match Point, and digs deep into the subject of morality and how far one will go to acheive success. Very emotional and gripping to the end, highly recommended.

Monday, November 12

Mickey Mouse making balloon animals behind a communist march

An ironic juxtaposition

Blues Night

Me, Keith, and his friend Charlie visiting from France