A Travellerspoint blog

Barajas Airport

Where are the planes?

sunny 31 °C

We’re on the train having enjoyed an excellent hot breakfast served at our “Preferente” seat by a bevy of RENFE staff and all included in our fare, (discounted 40% thanks to our “Tarjetas Dorada” or Old Codgers’ cards). Shades of good old British Railways 1st Class restaurant car, but with Hispanic style. Scrambled eggs with mushrooms, butifarra sausage and a fresh tomato sauce with some lovely fresh bread rolls, croissant, a choice of butter & jam or virgin oil & tomates, fresh juice and coffee. Absolutely delicious.


Before the stately arrival of our train, Murcia station was bustling with excited passengers travelling to Madrid or, on the other platform, to Valencia, Barcelona & Montpellier in France, mixed with bored commuters from Alicante, Cartagena and Lorca. The obligatory pair of nuns was waiting impatiently for the Madrid train, inexplicably attended to by a couple of dishy young men managing their vast amounts of luggage.

Our perfect train journey was marred somewhat by the arrival in the seat in front of a young man who boarded at Cieza. Shaven and tattooed head and T Shirt bearing the word “Vengeance” or similar did not bode well. Fears were confirmed when his mobile phone started twanging and clanking every 22.5 seconds, whether he was using it or not, all the way to Madrid. Why do these annoying people always have to sit in front of US?

John plugged his headphones into his laptop but, at last, the most annoying mobile phone in the world stopped emitting noises. Maybe we are out of range?

Now in Hilton, Madrid Airport. A top notch hotel at an affordable price, with a AAA discount code, thanks to our membership of the Royal Automovil Club de España. Plus, Bob’s Hilton gold card brings us a room upgrade to “Executive Floor” with free snacks, drinks etc etc in the young executives’ lounge, plus free internet plus free breakfast in the restaurant. All for the cost of a nice, pleading Email to Hilton HQ!

We’ve now been travelling to the US since 1981 and so we are beginning to get the hang of all the wrangles and wrinkles available for those cheeky enough to ask for them. I’m guessing that the freebies for this one night’s stay is worth in excess of 50€.

We were not going to pay Hilton prices for dinner, however. So nice young Tomas on Reception drew us a map to show where we could find some local cafeterias for a Menu del Dia. The map took us in to Madrid suburbia and a subway station but no sign of a café. A local, after some skilled questioning, revealed we were actually standing right outside one, though it was hidden in amongst some suburban trees.

At 4pm we were still not too late for the lunchtime menu. For 10€ we got 3 courses, bread, drink and coffee. I had spinach with prawns and Bob an enormous tuna salad for starters
and then hake “ventricles” or fish fingers, freshly made for John, Bob taking the pork chop for main course. An ice cream and a custard (natillas) rounded off an excellent meal. Chips nearly as good as our favourites in Mazarron.


It was a hot walk back but worth the effort.

Our ultra modern room is best illustrated by the fact there is a glass basin in the divine bathroom. Sliding glass doors abound and Arthur will not stop playing with them, though there is little chance he will spend long behind the shower one.

A splendid hotel which gets excellent reviews at TripAdvisor.

Miami tomorrow!

Oh yes: no planes? We are only a couple of hundred metres from Barajas airport and it suddenly struck us we had not seen or heard any evidence of any aircraft whatsoever. We thought that maybe a sudden general strike had been called. But no, a glimpse from our window and we just caught a BA jet coming in to land. Phew!

Posted by Johnash 11:11 Archived in Spain

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Glad you are enjoying the start to your holiday,sorry the moron spoilt the part of the trip yo were looking forward too Bob.I am staying in a very nice holiday reort as well accommodation excellent.

by Brenda Collis

The train journey was fine. Hassle for a short while, that's all. Have got used to noises emanating from electronic devices when trying to do something else, Brenda! Early night tonight. Night night, all.

by Johnash

Just looked at forecast. Tropical storms for Miami tomorrow! Uhuh.

by Johnash

Hi both. Glad to hear from you it all sounds so exciting, breakfast looks delicious sorry to hear you encountered and Ass H... but there is always one
its usually screeming kids!!!Sounds like you have averything organised and off pat (whoever pat is)dave loves to know how to get good things cheap so he is impressed with the idea of discount cards!!!. Well enjoy rest of journey and wait to receive the nest installment..Love J&D

by jean and dave

you have not disappointed me pictures of breakfast and talk of food all before my breakfast must get up earlier to enjoy it xx

by vivienne

I hope you have a fabulous time!
I love hearing about the food you're trying! It makes me hungry though!
Take care xx

by Emma

Arrived Miami after 2,5 hour delay due to incoming flight landing on Azores when passenger sick. A further 30-40 minutes on the ground at MIA waiting to get into gate! Quick meal in hotel and now to bed. Rather tired!

Buenas Noches. (Spanish vital here!).

by Johnash

Glad your journey is going well the train journey sounded like something from Poirot were the nuns real.Love reading blog feel like I,m there.Look foreward to plenty more

by jan

Know all about noisy people, we went to Edinburgh for the day last Thursday and even though we were in the quiet coach people still used mobiles.
Glad you arrived OK, hope the sick passenger hadnt eaten in Galera!

by Brien

At last you've arrived, let the road trip begin. I'm looking forwards to seeing what you boys get up to. Hurry up start this trip, get in that car and drive!!! xx

by Antonia

Glad you arrived safely. Hope the weather forecast was wrong! Look forward to the next blog xx

by Louise

Arrived Santa Monica in our red Nissan Pathfinder after splendid 5 hour flight from MIA-LAX. Great hotel (DoubleTree) view of Pacific, just.

New Blog asap. So much to do!

All the comments are REALLY appreciated. Thank you....

Keep 'em coming.

STOP PRESS Two HUGE slices of choccy cake arrived in room for John's 65th birthday. A little early, but never mind.

by Johnash

II trust you will be saving the cake until October! Looking forward to next installment x

by Paul

If you save the cake it will be a waste,but something tells me you have already eaten it.Your waistlines will expand daily...GO FOR IT...Love from the Baggyenders

by Brenda Collis

Noooo.... Brenda me thinks he gave the cake to Arther for breakfast, John doesn't really like cake ;)

by Paul

You must of told them that you are 65 this year thought you would have kept that quiet. Now everyone knows. So you will not need cake in October you have had it Enjoy xxx

by vivienne

Loving your comments.

Blog will follow tonight. Not forgotten. We have spent lots of time looking for things "lost". Eg chargers, cables, cameras, papers, pills, indigestion pills. Poor Bob. Plus trying to sort a car rental problem (they have put an extra charge on, it will get sorted) and the US phone SIM we bought specifically does not work. Grrrrr! Serenity maintained at all times!!

Sony Studios this morning. Drove past on way from airport and excited already. Ghosts from MGM are still there.

by Johnash

Oh.... cake? What cake? Waistline? WHAT waistline??

by Johnash

How many candles on the cake? not too many I hope be out of breath and unable to complain about car extras. Enjoy the cake.

by Brien

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