San Isidro: What You Do Too

So, as I was saying, you can do a number of things in and around that day to recall the pious man who was assisted by angels while trying to plow his fields until he collapsed.  Boy, I wish I could get a little help like that from time time…if only with the minor stuff like ironing.  My mom says I need to hire a laundress, but she fails to realize that is a profession that died out decades ago and that, as a rule, primary school teachers do not have laundresses.  Plus, I kind of like ironing; on good days at least.

      Anyway…the real thing to do is head out to the Pradera de San Isidro on the other side of the mighty Manzanares River and, well, hang out.  That was yesterday, so you’ll have to wait 364 more days for the next opportunity to participate, don’t say I never gave you a head start on next year’s planning.    There’s a big sort of carnival, and hordes of people just lay out on the grass and have a picnic.  That’s what they’ve been doing for centuries, and if you don’t believe me, check out Goya’s painting the very same scene over two hundred years ago.  So, I think it’s a kind of cool thing to do, even if you aren’t doing anything in particular.  Here’s Goya’s painting:

The Meadow of San Isidro on the Feast Day / La Pradera de San Isidro en Dia Festivo


Here you can actually see landmarks that still stand out in Madrid’s old town like the dome of San Francisco el Grande and the Palacio Real.