A Kid in Madrid

The twenty-seventh installment of my abandoned Granadino memoir, Flawed Abroad: Useless editorializing from an ignorant, close-minded American on his semester overseas.

Viernes, 25 Febrero 2005, 21.02 (Friday, February 25, 2005, 9:02 pm)

So it turns out I’ve been lying to myself all these years. I’d always thought that I was one of those people who genuinely enjoyed learning but simply didn’t function well in a classroom setting. “Bring on the field trips!” I would beg, assuming that being in the same setting as history would trigger my innate desire for self-edification. As it turns out, that’s not the case. The one thing I have learned over these past three days is that, apparently, I am just another apathetic slug, the very same disinterested, know-it-all cynic that I have despised for so long. To wit: our tour of the Palacio Real de Madrid earlier today.

As you may have deduced from the name, the Palacio Real is Madrid’s very own royal palace — a gigantic stone edifice built for Spanish royalty (duh) that, incredibly, is even more massive than the Escorial in Salamanca. (Technically, it’s still the official residence of the King of Spain, but it’s really only used for ceremonial purposes.) And yet, while the Palacio is undeniably awesome in scope and impression, I nonetheless found myself unable to listen to our guide for more than a few seconds at a time. When I asked myself why this was, the answer surprised me (which, in turn, surprised me as well): I just didn’t care.

I must be growing jaded in my old age… (Or perhaps it’s still colder than a witch’s tit here and my congealed synapses are incapable of sustained academic engagement. Let’s hope it’s the latter — otherwise, I’ve got a long, boring life ahead of me.)

Just keepin' it real. Palacio real!


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