The F-4s were still not ready to “cross the pond” when we returned to Torrejon AB from Cadiz, so we had a couple of days to visit Madrid.
We took the bus into Madrid, and I really didn’t know what to expect as we drove into the city.
Madrid is one of the largest cities in Europe after London, Paris and Berlin; but doesn’t get the publicity of the others.
We spent two days touring Madrid and had “roast suckling pig” or “cochinillo asado” for dinner at Botins, a restaurant frequented by author Ernest Hemingway, as mentioned in his novel, “The Sun Also Rises.”
This is the Madrid Bullring or the “Madrid Plaza de toros” viewed as the bus took us into the city.
The Madrid Bullring is the most important bullring in the world and was built in 1929, and has a capacity of 25,000.
We weren’t interested in watching a bullfight, so we continued on into the city.
When the bus dropped us off I began to understand that Madrid really was in fact a “world city” that I hadn’t expected at all.
This is the “Arco de la Victoria” and resembles the “Arc du Triomphe” in Paris
There were impressive buildings of every style of architecture from both the past and the present.
These school children were eager to have their picture taken and couldn’t climb onto this monument fast enough to pose for the picture.
Finally the school children were assembled, and this picture is now their “class portrait” from 20 years ago.
This is the “Monument to the author Cervantes,” with the characters of Don Quixote and Sancho Panza in front.
Here are the characters of Don Quixote and Sancho Panza as bronze statues at the monument’s base.
The school children loved the attention of the camera as they gathered around our two pilots for another photo.
I took this group photo of my pilot on the right and the other crew on the left in front of the famous monument.
This is the Royal Palace of Madrid or the “Palacio Real de Madrid.”
This is another view of the impressive Royal Palace in Madrid.
This view is the “south front” of the Royal Palace or “Palacio Real” with the “Plaza de Armas” in front.
This is the view inside the gates of the “Plaza de Armas” and the “Palacio Real” or Royal Palace in Madrid.
The “west facade” of the Royal Palace with the Royal Gardens or “Campo del Moro.”
The Royal Gardens are absolutely beautiful and are set on a very grand scale.
The Royal Gardens of the Royal Palace in Madrid are full of statues, fountains and beautiful hedges.
Madrid really impressed me with its beauty and relaxed lifestyle, and is on my list of favorite cities that I’ve ever visited.