Sunday, January 23, 2011

The "Apple" of Spain

Would have to be Madrid, however it doesn't quite match up to the big NYC. Although the city doesn't shut down for siesta time, it does have quite the night life, but lacks the neck aching tall sky scrapers. I felt a little at home with the life style there, everything moving faster and everyone with a purpose and place to be and go.

I've been thinking about this post for a few days now, configuring in my head how to convey with words the internal feelings while roaming Spain's largest city. I felt free and open, like I was on my own for the first time...ever. Thinking back, I've really had someone with me from the "get go." In Barcelona, I had all of the coordinators and now here in Seville I have my host family. But in Madrid I was really on my own, the coordinators would give us free time in the afternoon and we could just go out and roam the city all on our own. Walking through the center of Madrid, the small streets lined with shops and filled with people, was liberating. I went out with only the company of myself one day and felt as though at that moment I was exactly where I was suppose to be, and it felt amazing.

                           A typical sight in the streets of Madrid
                       La Puerta del Sol, the center of Madrid
       Jackie (another american!) and I outside the Museo del Prado
        Parque del Retiro or other wise known as the central park of Madrid
                    A bunch of us beside the small "lake" within the park
           The street performer or street sitter, outside al Palacio Royal
                      A fellow American and I with the royals military men

Since everything in Madrid is relatively close we walked just about everywhere and by the end of the 3 days, my feet were killing me...literally. However it was all worth it, because we got to see some really great, world renowned stuff.
It was nice to just get a break from everything for a bit. School, swimming and get some time away from my host family. Not at all saying that I don't like them, just saying that sometimes it good to get a little break.
Over all it was quite the trip. I got a little bit of myself back, what with speaking a bit of English here and there. I'm a different person when speaking comes easily to me, where here in Spanish when I have a little funny remark to add to the conversation but I don't know how to say it, I usually just opt out of speaking. So it was a bit weird getting a bit of my old self back, but at the same time it was a nice refresher to know that I'm still there even if an invisible language barrier is trying to hide me.