By Laura Castro
It has been over a month since I’ve been in Madrid. There have been many adjustments that I have had to make in lifestyle, apparel and language. First things first, who knew that speaking English again would be such a struggle? I find myself using English words, but putting them in the construction of a Spanish sentence. Also, simple words like banana or room for some reason continue to store in my brain as plátano and habitación.
Apparel: this has been one of the better adjustments. I can now leave my dorm in my workout clothes without getting death stares from the strangers I pass on the sidewalk. I no longer feel ashamed when I wear jeans to the grocery store, or ballet flats to the bar. Not to say that I’m not ever so grateful for my newfound style that is highly influenced by European fashion, but there was too much pressure! Boston welcomed me, and my Ugg boots, back with open arms and zero judgment.
No pasa nada: Madrileño for “no worries.” The European lifestyle had to be the toughest part to leave. I miss siesta time after my three-hour lunch, which never failed to knock me out. The pace of everything in Boston took some getting used to again! I have made it work, classes are in full swing and I walk just as fast as I used to.
What is the best advice I could give underclassman, you may ask? Don’t waste time stressing. If there is one thing that I could credit to my study abroad experience, it would be that I learned how to relax and enjoy the simple things in life: spending time with friends, walking in the park, eating great food, drinking rich wine. Lastly, if you have the opportunity to study abroad and you don’t do it… YOU ARE CRAZY!
By the way, I was lucky enough to land an apartment in Stuvi 2, on the 23rd floor, facing the charles. Check out the view.