Well it seems I will be going back to Madrid after all. I bought a one-way ticket (e-ticket this time), directly from SpanAir, (part of the Star Alliance), for 65 . My friend Andrew, who is himself of Madrileño descent, plans to meet me there this time, but he's flying standby, and therefore doesn't know when he'll be arriving. I didn't even know that one could still fly 'standby', but apparently so.

For a few hours now, I thought I wouldn't be able to go, because my e-ticket reservation depends on my credit card, which I had thought was lost. I think I might be addicted to personal crises, because it's been a really exciting hormonal journey for the last few hours. I remembered, through the drunken fog of last night, that I had used it last at a Turkish restaurant here in Málaga, and the people who worked there have shown themselves to be kinda, um, shady, in my past dealings with them. So I imagined that they had intentionally neglected to return my credit card when I used it last night there, and perhaps intended to do a little shopping with it. And frankly, if that were the case, it would not be a big worry at all; credit card fraud is a problem for banks, not for consumers. Except that my flight to Madrid tomorrow requires me to present the credit card I used to make the reservation! One simply cannot win!

Now, you may be thinking, 'Why did you go to the Turkish restaurant a second time if they were 'shady' before?'. Well, the reason is that it's the only thing that's open near my flat in the Plaza de la Merced area of Málaga. At the risk of sounding like a fat, greedy American -- and I am neither fat nor greedy, and while unashamed of being an American citizen, I am not a typical American specimen, if only because of my willingness to ask questions -- I do not like the customs surrounding food in Spain. It just doesn't work for me.

So I've just finished getting my hair cut (again), when I realize that my credit card is gone. So I paid, left, and rushed the 5 kilometers back to the Plaza de la Merced, and prayed that the restaurant would still be open (because God only knows when things are gonna be open or closed here in Spain). It was open. I went inside, asked about my credit card, and the Turkish dudes got all defensive. They insisted that they remembered I took it back, which I found hard to believe because, hey, how could they remember some detail like that in a busy restaurant?

So I pulled out my wallet to demonstrate where it should have been, and as I had known, it wasn't there where I would normally put it. And while I was talking with him, I poked mindlessly at some of the many other orifices of my new, black leather wallet. Out popped my credit card. I left the Turkish place, walked across the plaza, wiped my brow, sat down at an Internet café, and wrote this.

So I'm going back to Madrid tomorrow. More soon.