I arrived in Madrid yesterday, and was fortunate enough to be met in the airport by Elea’s family. Elea was a student at my university last semester, where we got to know each other well. While her father is Spanish, her mother is from England, and the younger siblings are therefore pretty good at English. At least much better than I am in Spanish.
The family has been really generous, inviting me into their midst. When we arrived fro the airport the younger sister had a pool party with a couple of friends, while several cats were lying around in the shade and dogs happily barking at the people in the pool. It is a warm home.
It is also really great to finally meet these people whom my friend has spoken of so much. The shy sister, the wild sister, the brother with a growing moustache. I particularly enjoyed Elea’s mother and grandmother who are both so lively and accommodating and very British
We are not actually in Madrid, but in El Vellón an hours bus ride north of Madrid. They live in a beautiful old house, which seems an oasis in the middle of all the sunburned fields. The house is big and white and seems to stand so proudly on top a small hill in the outskirts of El Vellón. Inside it is homely and everything I imagine a Spanish home to be like with Spanish and Moroccan tiles and terracotta floors.
First impression of Madrid
Today was my first visit to Madrid, and my first attempt at using my high school Spanish amongst native speakers. I was surprised at how much I understood from hearing people talk and from reading. I feel pretty confident that I am going to make it this semester.
Madrid seems like a nice city, but it was so humid that most of my time was spent underground in the metro system. I am really looking forward to returning and getting to know the city better. To think that this will be my home for five months.
I have the feeling that Madrid is full of secrets which are only waiting to be uncovered.
Backpacking around Spain
After enjoying another day at the pool of my friend’s house and visiting the nearby San Augustin, I am ready to go on the road. Tomorrow, I am leaving for Granada. See you there!