Yes, I’ve had them for years. Yes, I knew it all along and yes, I enjoyed them as I should have, just as every year they bloomed in the only almond tree there was on my street. Only I ever stopped and think about it now, because I miss them.
For the last six years, I’ve been living in beautifully sunny Madrid and I feel I am luckier and happier every single day. I still live here, but I can definitely say a whole era has come to its end, and I won’t be having almond flowers in my life anymore. I’ll be having peace and quiet, I’ll be having the sun beating on my shoulder on a beautiful spring afternoon, drowning the screen of my computer in light as I write, and I’d hopefully be having strength and inspiration to remember and put down every single fact I’ve come to know about Madrid. It will always be the place where I literally landed on the almond’s street, where a sole almond tree blooms every year, spreading its branches over and old abandoned garden that mysteriously gathers up groups of tourists on any sunny day.
Madrid will always be the city where I learned why and where exactly you must drink a caña con limón, a cold sangría or even a good glass of red wine – Ribera del Duero, preferably. I´ll always have that sunny afternoon on Gran Vía when I drank my first cafe latte with my parents, the bar where I told them why we´d always get olives, as long as we order drinks, or what tapas really mean. I’ll try and remember the bar that closed down years ago only to be replaced by another one,
with another name, the beautiful parks where I used to have picnics or just get surprised when I saw people actually sleeping sound and safely on the grass, the large avenues and the sunbathed clear sky above me. I’ll never forget how impressed and annoyed I felt when there were so many people on the streets in the weekend and how happy I was when on a weekday I could easily stroll on any given avenue and feel safe and joyfull, as if it belonged to me.
Madrid is the place where I came merely as a child and I really learned how to grow up, how painful that is at times, and how to get over it. It’s not a good-bye; I’m not writing this because I’d be going away. No, I’m still here, only I live some other place, on a different street, in another neighbourhood and it all means a new start… of sorts. And I just felt like I had to state that one piece of my time in this beautiful town is over and another one has started. I don’t have almond flowers in sight anymore and I just felt like I should have owned it with this post. I still have time, space and yet lots of afternoons to go, whenever I feel like taking a walk on my avenues on a weekday. It only seemed fair to dedicate this chapter, at this time of night, to my sunny Madrid. After all, I have yet some travels to tell of these years, and I only just realized that back then, I never trully appreciated Madrid every time I left it for a trip. Madrid definitely brought light and happiness in my life, its sun, warmth and light made me a better person, and sometimes it even made everything as if time stood still.