We The Tantalised

    Puerta del Sol, Madrid, 2009. We were having breakfast in one of the few cafes here that cater for the early risers. Our table was next to the window, and we could see the sun strip the square of night and the morning commuters dress it for the day. I was having a…

Madrid: Salsa and Tacos

    Madrid has been described as the most Spanish of cities – a capital who, like a mother, gives up her own identity and ambition for the sake of her children. There are very little things you could call Madrileño. Maybe churros, the callos de Madrid, cocido Madrileño and a few other dishes. For…

Travel Essay on Chiaroscuro Writing

  The Gran Via, the Plaza Mayor, Puerta del Sol – these are places that dwarf you, make you feel like an ant standing at the threshold of the cosmos. It’s not just their size that makes you feel miniscule; it is their splendour, the regality, the life and living they can host, coliseums of…

Little and Often: Eating in Madrid

  Coming from a Maltese gastronomic culture good food for me means good portions. Seldom do you go to a Maltese restaurant and feel like you’re climbing a proverbial Everest. Upon leaving you notice the rest of the diners loosening their belt, huffing like a pregnant woman, and drinking copious amount of digestifs-cum-grenades. So to…

Spanish Streets and the Meaning of Life

    Calle del Principe, Madrid   Look up, look up Above the regiment of shops.   Look up into the balconies, Introverted like a snail withdrawn. There is no wind, no rain, no sun, Inside the balconies Men are gods without knowing, Divinity by accident, no: By hard work! ‘Come to Madrid, little one,…

Travel Essay on Madrid and Writing

  ‘The meek shall inherit the earth.’ The Biblical phase ran through my un-Biblical mind as I walked under the arcades of the Plaza Mayor and saw the lines of men asleep in grey sleeping bags sheltering from the February rain. They had long beards, their clothes overwhelmed them, hiding their shame, wiping out their…