La Elipa, Madrid! souvenirs forever!!!

And coming back to nostalgia posts updating this one was a thrill and very happy to see it again and updated for you and me. This is one of those little places one do not think visiting but then again I was living in Madrid. Living and visiting are two different things; what you go through you do not forget and when all was fun and happy times ,souvenirs forever my Elipa! Let me tell you a bit more ok.

I come to my nostalgia, my souvenirs of youth in a city that will always be mine, Madrid. I have written so much on it in my blog over the years, but as always when you have so much to share ,you seen to forget the little spots that brings out the real joy in this much travelled men. Ok so I would like to share it with you, a nice piece of my life’s history. I will take you to a very off the beaten path of MadridLa Elipa and its old but wonderful baseball field.

The Elipa  is a neighborhood in Madrid located in the district of Ciudad Lineal. It borders to the north with the Carmen neighborhood, to the east with the cemetery of the Almudena, to the south with the district of Moratalaz , and to the west with the Avenida de la Paz( peace). The Elipa is located around the Avenida del Marqués de Corbera, most if not all the buildings are from the decades of the 1960’s and 1970’s. The area’s lung is a pine forest in which a national school is located. This pinewood was quite small due to the construction of the M-30 beltway highway (finished around 1974) , although many of its inhabitants mobilized to avoid its disappearance. And now a great beltway of inner Madrid. Very near where I used to lived!

A bit of history I like on the area

The area of La Elipa today was between 1212 and 1219 the Lujanes, a former lineage from Madrid, had a lordship in what would be known as the Elipa. It was granted by the king to Miguel Ximénex de Luján, who named it in memory of his wife, Phelipa de Vargas. At the beginning of the 19C, the Elipa belonged to the municipal district of Vicálvaro. Towards 1880 in Madrid, it was necessary to build a new modern cemetery of great capacity, but since there was not an appropriate land in the city, the new cemetery was made in the area of Vicálvaro, so that the large piece of land of the new  cemetery was bought to Vicálvaro and annexed to Madrid towards 1886, this is today the necropolis of the Almudena. In the year 1951 the municipal district of Vicálvaro was annexed to Madrid due to the great urban chaos that existed in the area of the current neighborhoods of the Elipa and  district of Moratalaz and because Madrid needed space to grow.  As envisaged by the Ministry of Housing, the new urban projects improved in quality, thanks to the intervention of the private initiative. For example, a neighborhood of this type was that of the Elipa. Until this time ,in the 1950’s the current  Calle San Maximiliano and Avenida de Marqués de Corbera formed a single road, which was known as the Calle de la Elipa. The construction of some blocks of flats, which had their entrance through the avenue, gave the main route of the neighborhood its current width.

As far as transports ,many taken by me since my early teens living there were initially old bus as private vans belonging to a private company that connected the Plaza de Manuel Becerra with the cemetery of the Almudena ( bus line P-10) and the neighborhood of Quintana (my old home area!) with the Vallecas (bus P-13 ,and the one I always took to reach the Elipa baseball field see below). These vans, which circulated in the Elipa, became the lines, of the new Madrid transport network  E.M.T. (Empresa Metropolitana de Transportes) the nos. 110-210 and 113 (running the same route as my old P13!). In  2007 was inaugurated the Metro station of the Elipa, belonging to Line 2 and located in the Avenida del Marqués de Corbera, corner with Calle Santa Felicidad.

On the border with the district of Moratalaz is the sports center of the Elipa, which despite its name does not belong to the district of Ciudad Lineal, but to Moratalaz. In this sports center, apart from swimming pools and other sports facilities, is one of the few fields of grass for baseball in Spain, where they play and train, among others, the Municipal school of baseball of Madrid. This is my old playing field visited nowdays when in the city and still looks wonderful; lots of youthful memories here, and it makes me feel young when by here! I give you now some webpages to help you understand the baseball here. First from the city of Madrid on the sports complex, and then the Spanish Baseball/Softball federation on the school of baseball of Madrid.

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These are long links could not make it shorter, sorry.

The city of Madrid on the Elipa sports complexhttps://www.madrid.es/portales/munimadrid/es/Inicio/El-Ayuntamiento/Equipamientos-deportivos/Centros-deportivos-/Relacion-de-Centros/Centro-Deportivo-Municipal-La-Elipa/?vgnextfmt=default&vgnextoid=f6b842be9971c010VgnVCM1000000b205a0aRCRD&vgnextchannel=3073999da73ad210VgnVCM2000000c205a0aRCRD

The official Spanish baseball and softball association on the Municipal School of Baseballhttps://www.rfebs.es/club/escuela-municipal-de-beisbol-de-madrid/#1515509957038-4d2e3dcc-e11d

And of course a bit more on the history of this La Elipa sports complex the home base of baseball in Spain  and today it is ,also, the school. Many memorable moments of teen years here!!!

The baseball field of La Elipa, in the district of Moratalaz, has more years than the Vicente Calderón stadium (now gone) or the stadium of Vallecas. So much so that it is the oldest in Europe. Its concrete, sand and turf have been a living witness to the history of this sport in Spain and its struggle to grow in the Spain of football/soccer fame. Not many know it, but there was a time, between the 1960’s and 1980’s  not only Real Madrid CF (my TEAM in baseball I played as well as football/soccer and the other sports I follow such as basketball), F.C. Barcelona or Atletico Madrid had baseball sections, but was taught in schools and at least in Madrid, everyone who wanted to start a team received from Castilian Federation , the balls, bats and gloves to do it for free. Two American teams made up of military of the bases of Zaragoza and Torrejón de Ardoz (played in the Elipa field as well!! ) joined in on this league that counted about 8 teams including the Abraham Lincoln School, Condepols, and Piratas teams!! (what a bunch of memories here) . The Latin American exiles fled from the dictatorships of their countries, did joined in and help improve the level of baseball here.  Spain did ok with winning the European title of 1955, several sub-championships, and especially the Olympic Diploma of Barcelona ‘ 92.

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When touring the corners of the field today, one intuits that in that form of decadent beauty hides the memory of a time past full of great moments. Its cracks rust and flaws are like the scars that tell us about the hard road that has come to get here, and at the same time, are signs of the strength it treasures; like saying, “I’m here to stay.” With a seating capacity for just over two thousand people, it will go thru one of the most important reforms in its half century of history. They have change the sand and the little natural grass that is not dry for a synthetic surface, easier and cheaper to conserve, and the changing rooms are going to be built again. A facelift for an installation that holds firm the ups and downs of this sport. That is still available, as for 55 years, of those who want to venture into the romantic struggle of minority sports, or those who want to feel the distant homeland a little closer. Indeed so much nostalgia and memories here to last me for a lifetime; Madrid will always be Madrid in heaven with a hole in the sky to look down it every day. Thanks Elipa!!!

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And thank you for reading it. Its one of those simple spots that means so much to me and reminds of my dear late mom Gladys efforts to bring me to La Elipa. Indeed memories forever. and hoping you are a fan of baseball and stop by and see it, looks like any small US town baseball field!!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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