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New year, new ideas
this year has to be better, right?
En febrero el perro busca la sombra (In February dogs look for the shade). As in, we’re starting to get days too sunny even for sun-loving pooches. As in, spring is not here yet, but it’s on the way.
So we’re well into February 2021, how did that happen?
Apologies for too-long silence. As you might know or at least guess, I have been obsessing about politics and about our not-friend Madame Corona (sister’s auto-correct) and about wacky weather everywhere. And yeah, a big dose of virus fatigue, not that I have it or have had it, but the general paralysis has affected a lot of people. Including me, it seems, alas.
BUT! The paralysis seems to be waning, partly due to a lateral approach to getting motivated: doing a virtual Camino (Road of St. James). Now, that may seem unrelated to anything useful, but part of Madame Corona’s side effects for me has been getting off my walking program, which keeps me healthy physically and mentally. So challenging myself to walk more daily, with my distance counting towards Santiago, really has gotten my legs moving again. And laterally, got me moving on other things. Like (hopefully) getting back to almost-weekly newsletter.
By the way, progress on my virutual journey to Santiago: yesterday I passed Burgos. I’m almost halfway from Saint Jean Pied de Port in France to Santiago – halfway is Sahagún, probably three-four days from now if weather cooperates. If you are feeling in need of motivation, virtual journeys are definitely something to consider. I’m using www.caminoforgood.com which only has the Camino. This app has the Camino and other classic routes https://www.theconqueror.events/all-challenges/#hw_card Both are for-pay, both give back in some way. Other virtual journey apps (or apps with walking routes) are free.
And yeah, since we are at the beginning of a new year, I have plans. Not exactly resolutions, but yes a list of wanna-do’s. Some will depend on easing virus restrictions. Others not so much: get back to my French, knitting, more writing. Oh, and cooking, trying to learn more and my brother jump-started that with an Amazon gift certificate for a belated Christmas present, the mega-tome Milk Street Cookbook, which I’ve just started to explore. Pages and pages of sauces! Multiple recipes with fennel! Yay!
So what is in store for us in 2021? Ok, true and strange confession. I have a Tarot deck and while I don’t really know how to read it, do like to check things out a couple of times a year. Last year only did it once, probably in January or early February, when I got the Worst Ever Seen spread of cards, with death, illness, financial ruin, all icky. And I say must have been in that time frame since nothing at that exact moment indicated that level of calamity – and I quickly put away the cards saying it must have been mistaken and those things don’t really predict anything accurately, right? Let us ponder, ok? Anyway, I did another Tarot yesterday, asking just about myself and all is good. Not easy, but good, though interestingly, the layout indicated that the year would largely driven by outside forces or other people, which makes perfect sense. Now if Madame Corona would just vacate.
What’s on in Madrid? And in Spain? Not a lot, given the virus situation. Sevilla has cancelled their big Easter week celebration, Pamplona has cancelled the Running of the Bulls, and I think the big Carnival celebrations in Tenerife and Cadiz have been scaled way back or are completely virtual. All sad but good decisions.
Madrid’s bigger farmers’ markets at the Casa de Campo park and the Matadero cultural center are on hold for now, though the smaller Mercado Productores-Planetario is still meeting twice a month http://productoresplanetario.es/ You can also contact some of the producers at the Casa de Campo market, making your order online and picking up at the market center http://www.camaraagraria.org/
Madrid’s museums are mostly re-opened, with limits on number of people, lots of hand sanitizer and of course mask requirements. The Prado has a “Re-Encounter” tour, showing just their top pieces in specific spaces – that does include the Meninas and Garden of Earthly Delights, in case you were wondering; I saw those paintings absolutely alone, never happened before! That was on a Monday over lunchtime, museum was almost empty. The fabulous Archaeological museum is also open, showing most of the Spanish exhibits on the first two floors. If you haven’t seen that museum, you really should consider a visit (have said it before and will say it again). Oh, and on the topic of museums: there’s a fabulous museum card, yearlong, unlimited visits to state museums for 36.06 euros. That includes most of Madrid’s big museums (not the Thyssen, which is free on Mondays noon – 4pm), and important museums in other cities. More info on this card and other deals at this link, scroll down to see the annual card and list of museums that are included. Only thing is: you cannot reserve ahead, so if going to a popular museum, pick your time carefully. http://www.culturaydeporte.gob.es/cultura/areas/museos/mc/nuestros-museos/tarifas-abonos-tarjetas.html
All for now, out the door for a probably wet walk. Maybe will reach Castrojeriz today. Virtually, of course. Probably will not climb up to the castle, though. Just sayin’.
Stay safe, stay happy!