This past weekend I went to Madrid with my program. We went to see a palace about 45 mins outside the city that was amazing. It was a grand structure that had gardens that I’m sure in the summer are beautiful. The inside has so many nooks and crannies. We saw the king’s bed and it is the smallest bed… If I were king I’d have a king size bed not a twin. We saw the basement where they keep all the dead royalty, Kings, Queens and so on. It was kind of creepy but cool to know that the royalty have the most decorative resting place.
We went to a museum called el Prado which has some of the most famous artwork. I’m not one for museums of art but I saw some cool things and I’m glad I went. We also went to a huge flee market that is famous in Spain. We went to the Real Madrid Stadium (which I am not a Real Madrid fan… GO BARCA) but it was pretty cool to see how big the stadium is, which is huger than huge, and that the players have Audi seats to sit in. Or to know how many trophy’s they have won. And I got to take a picture with my BFF Liasor in the store. He was just standing there wearing the Madrid uniform and I was like “hey there’s Liasor, I’m gonna take a picture.” Then my friend Jenna and I decided we are going out, we are going to have fun. So we bought some whiskey which isn’t that good but mixed it with Coke so it was all good. Then we had to go shopping for something to wear because this club is a little more dressed up and I didn’t bring anything to wear. Thankfully I found a dress for 5 Euros and some shoes for 6 Euros and a jacket for 13 Euros so I bought an entire outfit for like 24 Euros. I’d say that was a win. Unfortunately my dress was a little big on top and I couldn’t find a safety pin so we ended up stapling it (thanks for the idea T.T) and it worked like a charm. By the next morning though it wasn’t worth saving and I threw it out since the staples had started to rip the dress. My friend Erica was my roommate and she was going out too and was she excited 😉 and then all we had to do was convince Kelly to go out which of course she did. It was a good night with drinking, music, dancing, and a 7 floor club. We all got back late anywhere from 3:30am to 6am. Needless to say the next day we were all tired and all we really had to do was get on a bus and sleep. Thank the heavens. Madrid was especially cold and I was happy to be back in Alicante where it’s not as cold and you don’t have to wear multiple layers. But all in all it was a good trip and I like Madrid!
Now classes have started and I can feel that I might have a lot of work this semester. My class in the University has a lot of outside work but I don’t have a Mid-term or a Final. But we shall see what the rest of the semester brings. I will be one busy bee this semester with my classes.
When I wrote last I wasn’t sure how I felt or what I was thinking about being back in Espana but now I know that staying for a year in Spain was one of the best choices I have ever made. It wasn’t easy at first because none of the new students were going through what I was going through. I had been through that six months ago and I am on another level. This isn’t new for me because I’ve been living here and traveling around Europe and I really missed the home I just came from. I had just spent 20 day home with my family and friends. I had to adjust back to my life in the States. Adjusting back was hard at first too because you look at things and think that isn’t the same or everything looks different or have jokes with your study abroad group or things about Spain that you miss or customs and you think “Oh my this is so different, I’m different” and it’s true you are not the same person that you were before you left. You talk to people and think this conversation is retarded why are we talking about this, it’s not important. I know I did. I just thought about how some people never think outside the box, never leave their city and never have experiences that would even come close to anything I have been through or experienced. It’s just a different same level. But as I went through the Intensive Course a second time and started meeting new people and getting back into my groove, I realized that I wasn’t missing home and I was glad to be back. I hadn’t been sad when I left because I knew I was coming back and I guess it took some time before I could readjust and be right back into my Spanish life.
But I know this was the right choice because I am becoming better at Spanish, I have the opportunity to travel to more new and exciting places, I am forming a relationship with my Madre that I will stay with me for a lifetime and I will never forget her, I have friends that are from all over the United States but in Spain as well, and I am living a life that isn’t always easy (no life really is ever that easy) but really is the easiest life I will ever have. Life here is hard because you are away from home, family, friends, ha food, and everything you are used to. First semester I understood it but I was on an excitement high and everything was so new. Now after going home and thinking about the rest of my time here I truly understand how hard it is to miss all of those things. But at the same time I appreciate them so much more. I realize that this is my life and that in no time it will be over and then everything I have experienced and the bonds I have made will come to an end. And my no pasa nada life style will end as well. Life in Spain isn’t tough but laid back. I have classes that require work and are hard in the fact that everything is in Spanish (although that now is no problem) but not in the amount of work they require. Which is good though because if they were like my classes in the States I’d never leave my room or have time for anything like traveling, meeting people or learning the language or culture. My classes in the States are extremely harsh with the amount of work they give. I take a siesta almost every day, my madre does everything for me from laundry and cleaning to making all the meals, I get to travel to countries all over Europe and CIEE even takes you to some places in Spain, and I get to live 10 mins from the beach in a climate that is beautiful (except right now… no heat and it being like 35/40 degrees is not fun ahaha but thankfully I have like 5 blankets to sleep with at night.) I really want to integrate my two lives. A life with siestas every day, speaking Spanish, eating American food, seeing friends and family, and living and traveling in Europe.
Anyway the whole point to this post is to say that I couldn’t be happier that I made this choice to stay for a year. I had thought that it might be a bad idea or that I couldn’t do it (which of course I could) or that it way too long. But after one semester you realize that 4 months just isn’t enough to see everything you want to see, do everything you want to do, and learn as much as you thought you would. So it will be a hard end of this journey because I love my Spanish family and especially my madre and I don’t want to leave Alicante when its summer and I could spend every day on the Mediterranean beach or laying out by my pool. Or always seeing the same people that I have grown close to like Kelly and Erica and those who have left already Annie and Maggie and the whole group really 🙂 But at the same time I’ve been here for a long time and I can’t wait to go home and first eat everything I’ve been craving and to see my family and friends. This journey I’m living has had its ups and down but what’s about to come is exciting and going to end is a second.