Now that is what a Sunday is all about! I took to the streets and crossed at Menéndez Pelayo to the Retiro Park which I promised I would not enter but did anyway. There was a local administrative building which they have decided to turn into a local library. An excellent decision I have to admit. I have asking for one for years, on a private level that is, and it seems that finally we are going to get one. The Retiro Park was getting crowded, but I didn’t care because all I wanted was to get to the other end. I passed the Forest of the Absent which commemorates the March 11, 2004 train bombings which 191 people. The olive trees and cypresses have certainly grown since then.
I exited the Retiro at the corner of of Alfonso XII and walked down the famed Cuesta de Moyano which is known for its outdoor book stands that line the road all year round. Sunday is the big day but you can go by most any time and poke your head around. In fact, it’s usually a lot easier if you avoid the end of the week perusers. The Cuesta de Moyano is a classic in Madrid. I don’t make many trips, but on occasion I check it out, usually when I am on my way to doing something else and sometimes grab a volume of this or that at a decent price.
The booksellers at the Cuesta can be friendly, but also pretty fussy too. I was flipping through some police novels at one table, I never buy them but I often think about doing so, picked up one, read the back and put it back. Boy, you’d think I had just tipped over the whole table from the reaction of the old woman running the place. She hobbled over at a frightening pce, straighten out a few stacks and basically told me to go somewhere else…which I did…and without honoring her with my business.
I had nothing in mind but finally chose a book which featured a brief history of Madrid. Not that I had any clear purpose for it. Just thought I it might come in handy some time.