Jet Lag, Wedding Dresses, and Graffiti

17 Jan

What a day or day and half or maybe two.  Flying across the ocean sure can be an adventure and my sense of time, as you can tell, is very out of whack!  With a 6 hour time difference, we got into Madrid at 7:30 AM local time(1:30  AM back home) and I haven’t stopped since.  Top that with pulling my first “all-nighter” after getting what seemed like no sleep on the plane, and I’m sure you can understand my sense of confusion with the time.  But wait, to add to the confusion, I was served a ham and cheese sandwich for breakfast and a fried egg for lunch.  They sure are backwards here…or are we Americans the odd ones?  I guess it all depends on the perspective.

As you may or may not know, all students are assigned a host family to help them dive right into the culture.  As it turns out, I could not have asked for a more gracious host mom.  She is a 50-year-old wedding dress designer!  When we rang her bell, she came running toward us waving sporting a purple cheetah sweater and tall heels.  What more could you expect?  As she poured us café(coffee), she proceeded to tell us all about her city, the history, the different neighbor hoods, and how centrally located her home is.   It is evident that she truly cares about us, as she cooked us a huge feast consisting of bread, eggs, pork chops, potatoes, soup, and flan!   Also, as we were headed out to the metro, when she saw it was raining, she practically sprinted (yes, in her heels and all) to get us umbrellas for the walk…boy was I glad.

Political Graffiti at my University

Political Graffiti at my University

In the short time since I have embarked on this journey, I have already conquered many challenging situations: I made my first international flight, took a taxi, spoke lots of Spanish with my Señora, and successfully navigated the metro system to arrive at school.  While the campus was beautiful, I was stunned to see graffiti all over everything. It was comparable to the chalking that clubs do at Purdue, but this “art”(as my advisor called it), was permanent.  It’s not that I was in a bad part of town or that the University was not well cared for. Graffiti simply is a part of the ambiance…it’s an art form I must learn to appreciate.


All in all my trip is off to a great start and cannot wait to see more of the city and gain more experiences, but for now I am off to get some sleep…but not before our Senora cooks another grand meal!


One Response to “Jet Lag, Wedding Dresses, and Graffiti”

  1. Joe Lira January 18, 2012 at 5:27 pm #

    Hi Madrid Mandi. I hope you have a great trip. Looking forward to reading more updates.

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