I woke up this morning in a montage with a soundtrack. Today was to be my first IKEA day… A little ridiculous for some of you, I’m sure…after-all…for most of you, IKEA is like McD’s… but my South African self left the house like a kid on the way to a theme park on her birthday. Checklist and strict cash budget in mind, my sister-in-law offered to take my travel cards off my hands. We started the day with a typical Spanish breakfast. Freshly baked bread with olive oil, tomato pulp and a slice of jamon accompanied by a bebida of strong-as-an-Italian-sailor’s-beard coffee. Just the fuel for such a demanding excursion. My niece and I wove through the interior exibits, plonked down on sofas and peeled open kitchen cabinets and wardrobes to see the crazy and beautiful designs. Complete with plenty small IKEA articles, it is a well-made marketing plan and big girl’s play house. I packed my shopping bag with beautiful catalogs and collapsable things…for my tiny suitcase, you see. The whole excursion cost me just half my IKEA budget. A ridiculous 24 euros. With all the cash to spare, I attacked the tiny food store with renewed vigor and made my way to the checkpoint… twice. Each time armed with Scandinavian treats… slabs of choclate, spiced cookies, elder berry syrup in glass bottles and Glögg. Flush faced with the excitement we drove back to Arganda del Rey while the kids argued and I hugged my bag of shopping.