Save for the problem of gangs of pickpockets, it's usually a joy to travel on Madrid's ultramodern underground, or Metro. For one thing, there's very little advertising. Though this does rather deprive us of pictures of beautiful young people in their underwear. A fair price to pay, some would doubtless argue.
Another impressive feature of Madrid is its zoo, though these are not, of course, to everyone's taste. This lies in the middle of the Casa del Campo, a park during the day but a huge open-air brothel at night. But not only then; even at 4 in the afternoon a handful of prostitutes ply their trade on the main avenues, blithely ignored by picnickers, joggers, hikers and most of the cars. Very Spanish, as Time Out puts it. Which reminds me, while waiting for my younger daughter to finish some shopping on Gran Via, I went into a little church in one of the nearby squares. Hard to avoid noticing were the 4 prostitutes leaning on the wall on either side of the entrance. At 11.30 of a Saturday morning. Madonnas and whores again, I guess. Very Spanish.
Taking a cup of coffee with my elder daughter this morning, we were surrounded by guests at a First Holy Communion. One of these was a young woman in Goth attire. This included a mini-skirt (black naturally) that didn't quite reach the lace tops of her stockings. The latter, being white, appeared to be her only concession to the occasion. A nice touch, we thought. And very Spanish.
They certainly like their singing divas here. One of the most famous has recently passed away and words such as 'Goddess' have been liberally sprayed around the media. According to one newspaper, her funeral cortege would not have shamed one of the traditional (and highly 'colourful') religious processions of Easter Week. I guess she's warbling for the saints now. And I wouldn't be at all surprised if the Catholic Church now faced demands for this status to be visited on her.