I apologize for my lack of blog posts since arriving in Madrid. Like I mentioned before, the internet in my hostel doesn´t work on my computer, so I have been using my hostel´s computer lab to get online. This last week has been filled with searching for a piso, wining and dining, and walking the streets of Madrid!
I´ve made friends with a woman at my hostel, Victoria, who is great. We have been exploring Madrid and finding amazing little bars and restaurants. One of my favorites is this little to-go place right by Palacio Real... we get huge portions of food for cheap and take it to the park to eat. I have also met up with a few other auxiliares for drinks, and so far everyone I´ve met has been really cool.
The piso hunt has definitely been the more stressful and less glamorous portion of my week. Each morning I wait for my turn on the computers at my hostel, scour sites like Idealista and Loquo for apartment listings, and make a list of numbers to call. Then, I make some calls, in Spanish, to make appointments to view the pisos. Communicating over the phone in Spanish is not easy for me, but I can usually understand enough to make an appointment time and get the address. I´ve seen a few apartments in the past week, but nothing had really worked out until today! On Sunday, I am moving to a cute little apartment in La Latina with another auxilar who has been here for 2 years already. We get along really well and I think it´s going to be a great year! Now that I have my housing situation figured out, I feel like I can finally start settling in here!
So... what´s next?! Tonight I am planning to go to an ultimate frisbee practice with a local team here, Los Quijotes/Dulcineas. I´m excited to play some frisbee and meet some Spaniards, and hopefully practice my Spanish! I will also be looking into taking some Spanish classes here. I also want to find a few intercambios, or language exchange partners. The language barrier is definitely one of the biggest challenges for me right now. I feel so behind all of my friends here, and I really want to start improving my speaking. I´m trying not to be too hard on myself though, I know I can´t learn it all in a week!
I wish I could include pictures, but I can´t upload them to the hostel computer. I will upload pictures to my flickr account and blog as soon as possible so you can see Madrid through my eyes. To everyone at home, I love and miss you!