Trying to Work a Schedule into this Experience Abroad.
Since my “quotidian life” varies drastically between days that I have class (Monday & Wednesday) and those when I don’t, I’ll give you a peak into a Monday in Madrid.
It’s 8am and the sun is already shining through my balcony doors. My alarm rings and vibrates so obnoxiously that I jolt up immediately. This is literally the only way to wake up and keep myself up here in Madrid. The Madrileño schedule has very little time for sleep, as the streets are occupied until at least 4am everyday, closing only momentarily before the morning bustle begins.
Living in an apartment with two girls definitely has its clear disadvantages at this point. No matter what time I wake up, there just always seems to be someone already in the bathroom. While there is incessant conditioning and face scrubs, I steep my morning tea and pack my bag for school. However, the moment I hear that lock click open, I run. Quick showers ensue, as it is probably around 8:25am by this point, and we have to be out the door by 8:45am to catch our bus.
Once dressed and ready, we leave take our leave. Situated across the street, the bus stop is oh-so convenient in the mornings. Usually the next bus is scheduled to arrive within 3-5 minutes, which gives me the right amount of time to walk into an Ecuadorian bakery (Ecuapan) and buy a cheese-filled croissant for breakfast (only .50 euro!). At this point I’m pretty content with my life choices: living in Madrid, staying in a nice apartment, taking bites of a delicious baked good, and sitting on a Free-Wifi bus. Living the life. 8:50am
Fast forward 30 minutes of beautiful city scenery, we’re at our stop and start up a quick pace in hopes to get to class on time. 9:20am. Now we’re all wondering why we ever thought a 9:30am class while abroad was a good idea. Oh well, onward. Usually 9:28am. Causally fall into our Spain & the EU classroom and take our seats. Success.
Class, class, class. You know the drill. Then I have an Islam & Spain lecture at 11am, which is ridiculously interesting (and includes a trip to Morocco in late November!). After 12:20pm, it’s gym time. All of those tapas and late nights can definitely have a negative impact if you don’t stay or get active. Running, cycling, lifting, swimming: the works. 2:30pm. Home, shower, and LUNCH! I’m usually starving by this point, as my nutritional skills are obviously weak (I’m working on it)
Fast forward again to 5pm, once again running to school to attend my 6-9pm Cinema of Spain class. Meeting only once a week, and usually consisting of a movie and some chatting, it is quite amazing. Director Pedro Almodóvar is usually the main topic of discussion, with some debates between pastiche and parody. 9:30pm. Run home and try to have dinner at a normal hour. 11pm. When homework and readings are usually begun. (So now you understand the necessity of a loud alarm, huh.) 2am. SLEEP!
Repeat this on Wednesdays, minus the Cinema class. Every other day of the week is a mystery until the second plans are made. It’s actually quite refreshing though, after having my life planned onto my iPhone agenda back home. I’m going places, guys!
(Image is my Own: On my commute to school in the mornings, I have counted three large Spanish Flags. For a county that had lost all pride in it's flag after the dictatorship of Franco, it sure is making an effort to bring it back. Good for them!)