Currently on the downhill slide of my time in Madrid, with only 5 full weeks left. I can’t believe how time has just flown by. It’s all so surreal to me looking back at the various phases all 5 of us Aggies have gone through in our time here. First we were excited, but thoroughly terrified; then a little homesick; then comfortable and set in a routine; then very anti-routine and thirsty for new discoveries in Madrid; and now I think we’re all at various levels of Madrilleño.

Since I last posted, I’ve had more time to reflect and experience other countries. I can confidently say that of all the nations I’ve visited in Europe, Spain is my favorite, and Madrid is my favorite metropolis. Time after time, I’ve been taken aback by how amazing the Spanish way of life is. Going into this exchange,  I wrote off Spaniards as lazy people who ate a lot of ham and napped mid-afternoon, but it’s really so much more than that. They take the time to enjoy the important things in life that people in the States so-often pass up because we always have something else to cross off the to-do list or somewhere else to be. They value family as the most important thing, and are so passionate about cooking and even more passionate about being happy. People here are all so friendly and kind and easy-going and I feel

Showing Keaton around Retiro

a lot of that is attributed to the lifestyle that Spaniards are so keen on living.

In April, my boyfriend from A&M had the opportunity to visit during my spring break and he got to see first-hand all that I’ve observed over here, and he was truly amazed by the cultural difference. We visited a couple cities within Spain, as well as Marseille, France and Venice, Italy, and both of us wished we had spent the whole time in Spain because the people’s energy and attitude is just unparalleled. It’s taught me so much about myself and made me realize that I want to incorporate these fundamental aspects into my life back home when I return. I couldn’t be more excited to do this.

Another favorite memory of mine since I last posted happened last weekend. It was the first time that most of my friends were all in Madrid for the weekend since the beginning of the semester, so I decided to host a potluck lunch at my apartment. We sat around eating and gabbing for about 3 hours and it couldn’t have been more perfect. We all reflected on our experiences here and reminisced about just how fast its all gone by. It feels like an eternity ago that we all met up for orientation here but none of us can believe that our time here is wrapping up. Participating in this exchange has been the best decision I think I’ve ever made and even though it’s not over yet, I already wish I could do it again.

Aggies and other buddies pot-lucking it up!!