The landscape of Plaza Mayor's artists—performers and painters—is ever-changing. New life is breathed into the corners by dancing goats, mimes, pianists, and the occasional traveling circus, but you can count on one thing: Madari will be there, somewhere.
Madari leaves his number on his easel and his work laid against a random pillar. He then wanders the square, catching up with friends and waiting for someone to track him down to buy a painting.
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From my peripheral I saw his green claw-like hands reaching for the sky, moving methodically around his body as a tree growing into the heavens.
Soon he disappeared inside a crowd of enthralled spectators.
The next day, a morbidly obese Spiderman took his place.
Enjoy the street art while it is in front of you, for the next day it will all be different!
Just off the Plaza Mayor is one of many meat shops that you'll find in Madrid. The Spanish really seem to love their ham and it is done in so many different ways, as you can see. You can even get a ham sandwich, with very thinly sliced ham, similar to that from Parma.
A nice, inexpensive snack!
What is more enchanting than a winter Christmas market? Boughs of holly, tiny trees (to suit our smaller spaces), and Spanish sweets line ancient plazas throughout the downtown area.
Plaza Mayor is home to a local favorite market opening the last week of November, and is just around the corner from the larger, more varied bazaar of Santo Domingo & Callao.
Put on your walking shoes, scarf, wide eyed wonder, and enjoy the childlike simplicity of being enamored with the holiday season once again.
Christmas Like a Local, The Nativity Scene in Madrid
Nothing says Christmas in Spain like going to admire the many nativity scenes; every family has their favorites to frequent, but this year one took the King’s Cake.
The Madrid Zoo has set up an underwater nativity in their shark tank!
For more traditional dioramas, look to plazas with Christmas Markets : Plaza Mayor, Plaza de España and for the most lavish and intricate displays to take your breath away.
There will be large crowds and long lines but spending the time rubbing shoulders with Madrileños will leave an even deeper mark in your holiday memories!
Photo by Brian Hammonds/Flickr.