Day 131 - GoodBye Riogordo, Happy Halloween Madrid

It's October 31st! 

For us that means 4 things:

  1. We leave Riogordo, beautiful Andalusia, and more importantly La Manzana, the house in the mountains where we built a lot of memories for years to come. 
  2. We go to Madrid for a few nights.
  3. We return our Renault car after 3 months and about 7200 km (4473 miles).
  4. It's HALLOWEEN! :)

We had a lovely month at La Manzana, and we were all a little sad to leave the gorgeous views, the clean air, and the nice big open spaces behind.  Kian especially seemed a little upset, and said he already was missing the house :(  But it had started getting cold at nights, and we knew it was time to move on.  Even Juicy (yep that's the name we gave to all the bigger geckos) stopped by in the kitchen last night to say goodbye :) 

This morning, we packed up the car, the kids got dressed in their costumes, and we all hit the road and began our 5 hour journey to Madrid. 

Driving was smooth, and traffic and toll free :)  The only issue we had was finding a quick place to eat lunch, it seems every place that advertises food on the way to Madrid is a (slightly sketchy) sit down restaurant, no good for people on the go!  After dropping our stuff off at the hotel, it was time to say goodbye to our trusty Renault Captur that served us like a champ for 3 months and took us from France to Monaco to Italy to Spain.  Returning the car was just as awesome and quick as picking it up.  You can find out how we leased this brand new car for 3 months here

We ended up meeting a great couple from Melbourne, Australia at the drop off center and rode with them to the airport in the shuttle.  We chatted about our travels and their impressive travels to all sorts of places.  I love meeting random people from all over the world who are well traveled and love to talk about traveling (especially when they have also traveled lots with their own children).  

Getting back to the hotel from the airport was fairly quick and simple, with 2 short subways from the airport.  BUT, before going back we decided to eat somewhere.  Based on our previous conversations with locals in Andalusia, as well as with the conceirge service at our hotel, we expected to see very minimal, if any, Halloween related celebrations.  So, could you imagine our surprise when we found a TGI Fridays that looked more decorated than the TGI Fridays in Time Square, in NYC? 

There was scary music playing on the speakers and a big screen showed clips from American horror movies (we ended up sitting the kids facing away from the screen as it was definitely not PG =P).  All the waiters and waitresses were even dressed up very extravagantly.  A few young kids that showed up at the restaurant were also in costumes, so our kids fit in perfectly.  We had a great time getting in the Halloween spirit and enjoying some yummy food.

On our walk back to the hotel, we saw lots of kids dressed in costumes trick or treating at restaurants and a few stores.  We also saw older kids in costumes, presumably on their way to Halloween parties.  

Thanks Madrid!  We like you already :) 

In case you didn't catch our announcements on Facebook and Twitter, here's our Halloween treat to you.  Our itinerary for the remainder of our big adventure!  We are kicking it up a notch in speed!