a few weeks ago, we headed to madrid to santiago bernabéu stadium to watch real madrid play getafe.
though i believe witness would really be a more appropriate term than watch... i witnessed one of the cooler cultural experiences of my life.
in spain, soccer isn't just a sport.
it's oddly religious, an intensely-passionate way of life.
at the opening of the game, opera music blasts through the stadium.
it seems so out of place, but at the same time, it fits the situation perfectly.
there is no pump-up music, no announcers, no "let's make some noise!" commands on the jumbotron.
it's very smooth and seamless (still wondering how the players manage to run/sprint for 45-minutes straight...)
yet, the crowd is exuberant.
and watching the beloved cristiano ronaldo score a hat trick (and top his season-record for goals) on his home field was really unbelievable.
and these pictures don't even do the game justice.
it's times like these (or this whole trip, really), that i realize how lucky i truly am.
p.s. thanks to whitney for some of these images!