Trip Start Mar 03, 2012
13Trip End Mar 14, 2012
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We're so fortunate to have such wonderful friends. David and Sheila were fantastic hosts, and we will be forever appreciative. Hopefully we will be able to reciprocate in the near future. While the weather in England was wet for most of our stay, we still had a great time and will never forget the many memories. I was informed by David and Sheila that the sun does shine in the United Kingdom. I guess thats why the English believe in fairy tales.
A few days after we left England, the weather improved, but Sheila had a gallstone attack, and had to be taken to the emergency room. Thankfully she is fine now. Weather aside, everything has a way of working itself out, and we only wish Sheila good health. They are truly dear friends.
We miss them already.
I haven't mentioned much about our apartment and the neighborhood we were staying in. We had plenty of room as we had a living room, kitchen, dining area, and a separate bedroom, plus two tiny balconies. As we continue to rent apartments we're learning that it is much better to have your landlord live on the premises in case any problems arise. After we arrived and we were shown the apartment all seemed to be fine except for some issues with the Wi-Fi. After the first day we discovered that the bedroom window would not lock, and the outside shade would not pull down. Also we kept on tripping on a piece of metal on a step up to the bedroom. We called and to his credit he had someone there the next day to take care of the repairs. During the week we discovered that a clock and a hair dryer which was supposed to come with the apartment were missing. Our bedroom was in total darkness so without an alarm clock we had no idea what time of day it was. It could have been 3am, or 10am, but when you have to get up at a certain time, what seems like a minor missing item, can really be important.
The trash can for the apartment building was kept in the entry way. To say the least it wasn't a pleasant smell every time we had to pass it as we entered and left the building.
Overall, the apartment suited our needs, so we're really not complaining, just learning what we should look for in the future before renting.
The neighborhood was very quite surrounded by many four story apartment houses as well as very narrow streets, and small shops. The area appeared to be safe, but a little too quiet when you had to walk three blocks from our Metro stop after 10pm.
We really enjoyed Madrid, and found the cost of dinners to be about one third less than New York. Overall I'd say that the cost of living was much lower than what we're used to, which translates into a relatively affordable city to visit.