Well, I had some initial trouble connecting to the internet here, but I wanted to let everyone know that we have arrived safely in Spain and are starting to see things. Yesterday was an eventful day, so I have broken it into three entries. Make sure you see all of them! In this first one I will show some of the scenery we saw on the way from Rome to Madrid, and the house where we are staying, because it has some interesting things in it.
First of all, we boarded an early morning flight from Rome to Madrid. We flew on easyJet, a budget airline (tickets were 50 Euros). I had heard lots of good things about easyJet, some bad, and I am happy to report that we had a very nice experience. The flight crew were professional and friendly, the service was good, and the airplane was very clean. We did have to change planes on the ground because the one we were supposed to be flying on had engine trouble, but that can happen to any carrier, and we eventually got underway.
Here is a shot of the Roman coastline, just after takeoff. Goodbye Rome!
And hello Madrid! This is the Pantano San Juan, outside Madrid, which as far as I could understand from the fellow behind me, is an area of wetlands. At this point we had begun descending and were only a few minutes (flight) from the city.
Here is the house we are staying at. We are staying at the house of some friends of ours, the Victoria family. They are originally from Colombia where Mr. Victoria was a senator. The house is about 20 minutes outside Madrid.
Here is a shot of the interior of the house. Mom, don't you love the tile work?
Mr. Victoria has quite a large collection of rare and precious objects, such as this tapestry which belonged to King Philip II, the grandson of Queen Isabel.
These two chairs belonged to the last Viceroy of Colombia.
Here is a shot of Madrid from the balcony of the houes.
This is some of the family. L-R, Mrs. Victoria, Mr. Victoria, and one of their four sons Paul. Everyone speaks very good English.
Alex and Andrew went up the hill into the rocks above their home.
At the top of the hill is the house of Francisco Franco, the famous general of the Spanish Civil war.