Reviewing the Madrid Confessions

Regular listeners of The Monday Podcast may remember that I visited Madrid last year to take part in the Great Madrid Escape, an event organised by Ben Curtis and Marina Diez from

Last week Ben released an audio book: “The Madrid Confessions”, telling the story of different parts of his life after arriving in Spain up until the present day.

I was lucky enough to pick up an early tweet about the book and download it early.  I’ve reviewed it in this week’s podcast:

(Press the “play” button to listen to the podcast)

Notes From Spain: The Madrid Confessions

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Demonstrations in Madrid

I was in Madrid last weekend for the Great Madrid Escape, when on Saturday afternoon – with not too much to due thanks to the weather – I ventured out of my hotel only to be confronted by police cars blocking off the street.
It turned out that a demonstration was about to take place and I stayed to watch and found out what it was all about.

The flyer that one of the passing demonstratos gave to me explained the main reason for the march. The week before there had been attacks by a group of right-wing “terrorists” who had thrown bottles and stones, requiring at least one person to need medical treatment.
They claim that was not an isolated incident, and that these “terrorists” are part of the far-right, neo-nazi scene, who want other people to be afraid to go out on the streets.
For this reason they organised the demonstration as an act of public defiance, to show that the working people of Madrid will not tolerate such violence in their city.
I have a feeling that many of the people there came with groups that have other main causes – the large red, yellow and purple flag for example was being carried by a group who wanted to make Spain a republic and to do away with the monarchy.
What fascinated me most was how different it was compared to such an event in Germany. Here, many people would turn away – in Madrid many passers-by stopped to listen and even take photographs. There were even family members walking alongside the march and passing in drinks to the marchers.
I often wonder if we do enough in Germany to stand up for our rights. The Spanish, or at least the Madrileños are definitely more passionate about theirs!

A weekend in Madrid

I have just come back from a weekend in Madrid, taking part in the Great Madrid Escape.

Friday morning I took an early flight from Frankfurt airport to Madrid-Barrajas, and then travelled in on the metro to the city centre to find my hotel, after which I went to the first meeting point where I met Ben and Marina from for the first time, along with other members of the NotesfromSpain forum.

Due to the weather, I spent most of my time in cafés and shops when we weren’t all meeting up to eat together. There were some really good meals (shame about the cod…) at prices that would put some restaurants in Frankfurt to shame.

On Saturday afternoon I came a across a demonstration taking part through the middle of the city, protesting against neo-nazis in Madrid but also against the Spanish Royal Family! Many passers-by took note and were listening to the speeches being made at the Puerta del Sol.

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Listen to the podcast to find out more:

(Press the “play” button to listen to the podcast)

Download the MP3 file | Subscribe to the podcast

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