Proctor en Segovia: A Day as a Madridista

Posted by Proctor en Segovia

02/23/2020

Our day officially started at 1:30 pm when we met up at the aqueduct to head out to Madrid. We filled the bus for the hour-long drive we had all come to know well. We arrived and ate our bocadillos in the gardens in front of the Palacio Real. We sat absorbing the sun and enjoying the good weather as we finished up our lunches.

Proctor en Segovia watches a Real Madrid soccer match.

The group then divided into two groups. One group went and explored the palace with Ryan. The palace is the biggest in western Europe at 1,450,000 square feet and has 3,418 rooms. The other group went with Laura to find some cool thrift stores.

Proctor en Segovia visits Madrid's royal palace
Entering the Palacio Real (Royal Palace) in Madrid. (Photo Credit: Minh '21).

Proctor en Segovia visits Madrid's royal palace
(Photo Credit: Minh '21).

We met up again in the center of Madrid’s always busy shopping district. We had an option of Vietnamese or burgers for an early dinner. It was a unanimous decision for Vietnamese. Ngan had found the highest rated Vietnamese restaurant in all of Madrid which happened to be only a few minutes walk away from our meeting place. We were all starving and couldn't wait for dinner. The sun was just beginning to go down as we began our walk to the restaurant and the hot sun which had warmed our faces all day had sunk behind the cityscape. A slight chill filled the air refreshing us from the heat of the day. We arrived at the restaurant and shuffled in the door. Our group of twelve sat down and got situated. As we all looked through the menu questions were fired at Ngan and Minh about what they recommend and if a dish was good or not. I don’t think a single meal was ordered without their seal of approval. Minh and Ngan spoke with the owner in Vietnamese about his time in Spain and how we ended up here too. Our food was brought out and the aroma of cinnamon and mint filled the air. We devoured our pho as Ngan tried to teach us the proper way to eat it. Once we had filled our stomachs and had some time to digest we shuffled back out the restaurant and made our way over to the stadium. 

~ Emily '20

Proctor en Segovia samples Vietnamese food in Madrid
(Photo credit: Ngan '20)

Proctor en Segovia watches a Real Madrid soccer match.
(Photo credit: Parker '20)

Finally, the time has come, the moment where the heart of Madrid started bumping again. Los Blancos, was what they called their players, had returned home to play after their away game win. We left the Metro station for the Santiago Bernabéu stadium, home of Real Madrid C.F., a gigantic, metallic, concrete and 148ft high fortress that had brought much success for the team. The entries to the stadium were full of people walking from each and every direction, willing to support the team until the very end. We got to our gate and passed through the security quickly before entering the inside of the stadium.

Proctor en Segovia watches a Real Madrid soccer match.
(Photo credit: Parker '20)

For most of us, this was a completely new experience. While I had been to many soccer games prior to this, I had never seen a game as full of energy as this one. This five-story fortress was completely filled with people screaming and chanting for their home team. The sky was nothing [like] a black screen hovering up above. The lights illuminated the smooth green grass field, setting the stage for the main stars of the day to perform. Slowly, the players walked out of the tunnel with their traditional white jerseys with golden lines, numbers, and names on them while the team’s “anthem” was playing out loud to show the pride of the team. The whistle was blown and so the game began.

Proctor en Segovia watches a Real Madrid soccer match.

Like I expected from one of the best teams in Europe, the white giants completely dictated every action and movement on the field. They dominated the ball possessions, passes, and shots. However, it was the underdog, Celta Vigo that struck first. The stadium immediately went silent as if I was in the middle of a jungle by myself.

Proctor en Segovia watches a Real Madrid soccer match.
(Photo credit: Parker '20)

Despite having to trail the away team, the Madridistas did not lose their heat at all. Drums kept rolling, chanting got louder and sooner or later Los Blancos would put themselves on the scoreboard. They did at the beginning of the second half with a beautiful finish from Toni Kroos that placed the ball at the bottom left corner of the net. Suddenly, the stadium exploded we stood up to express our joy and cheer with the fans.

Proctor en Segovia watches a Real Madrid soccer match.
(Photo credit: Parker '20)

About ten minutes later, captain Sergio Ramos calmly scored a penalty kick to take the lead and we were able to celebrate again.

Proctor en Segovia watches a Real Madrid soccer match.
(Photo credit: Parker '20)

Proctor en Segovia watches a Real Madrid soccer match.
(Photo credit: Parker '20)

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The tide had turned but not for long as Celta was able to equalize the score in the last five minutes. The game now became even more intense as Real Madrid used its full strength to try to get another goal before it was full time. The fans also became even more energetic, shouting, screaming in protest of questionable fouls, and whistling at the opposing team's goalkeeper to try to make him hurry up. Unfortunately, none of that worked and the game ended as a tie. The fans left in disappointment, but, despite the unlucky tie, it was nice to spend a day as a Madridista. 

~ Minh '21

Proctor en Segovia watches a Real Madrid soccer match.

Click here to check out more photos from Proctor en Segovia Winter 2020!

    

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