Madrid people I will never forget - the Menendez brothers
They cried when I said goodbye!
When I arrived in Madrid in June 2009 I was a non meat eater after going off it completely when I had gastric flu in December 2008. After a few weeks I was tentatively nibbling on the odd slice of chorizo and then I braved the door of my local butchers. The brothers Menendez are the proud owners of a modest shop in Ricardo Ortiz and they are the loveliest, funniest and most generous men. The shop opens for business at 9 but they are there much earlier getting ready. They close at lunch at 2pm and then reopen from 5pm to 8pm. There are four guys serving behind the high counters and one of the brothers, Joaquin, speaks a little English.
I can't just pop in here. Every visit is an experience as we banter and laugh at life together. I have learnt more Spanish here than anywhere else! They give away puppy dog calendars at Christmas, they chuck in free chorizo sausages to make my budget go further, they use and misuse their English and they always have a smile for me. On my last day they took time out to have photos taken with me and gave me some homemade hamburgesas which were the best I have ever had. I miss you guys and I am so glad I got to know you.