Thursday, July 14, 2011

Blast from a Few of my Pasts*

Another reason this weekend was so eventful was because the FSU Valencia study abroad program was visiting. I have one friend from high school on the program and one friend of a friend from college. When I did my program last year we took trips like this except they were not to Madrid, they were to Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic and Krakow, Poland; and they were with our program of 30, not 100+. I was quite interested to see what a group of that size looked like and how it operated; and I was also, dare I say it, craving some 'good' American college fun (in a different country of course, that's the only way I really like to do college fun).

It was tricky though, because as we all know, I now had established a very strict curfew for myself, but good-American-college-abroad-fun-in-Madrid does not end anywhere close to 12:30. In fact, I'm fairly certain it hadn't even really gotten started by then. So I spoke to my friend, Leah (the one from high school), about a solution to this problem. Staying at their hotel with them wasn't exactly permitted, but after asking around, she reported back that the general rule of thumb was that, "it is better to ask for forgiveness than to ask for permission." So that settled it, and I was ready to have some Madrid fun and pretend I was on a study abroad program again, which is pretty much as good as it gets for me.

The Regina Hotel bar, 'Le Tigre' bar, an Irish Pub, and  a very elite Madrilleno club, 'Joy' later, and we were hobbling into bed in the wee hours of the morning. I don't know how much more of the story there is to tell because the rest is a bit of a mish-mosh of accents, drink orders, and techno music, but I do know that it was it was great fun, and a true testament to how being in a foreign country can turn strangers into friends, acquaintances into best friends, and old lacrosse teammates into bed-sharers.

Oh, I almost forgot--I also did some solo "sightseeing" Saturday afternoon. I put sightseeing in quotes because when I'm alone, I tend to do more wandering than seeing of sights. Often times it results in an inordinate amount of walking and me lying on my back in a park, taking pictures of strangers instead of sights. Which is precisely what happened on Saturday. I take pictures of the former rather than the latter mostly because while traveling alone, I prefer not to look like the biggest tourist in the plaza.
So here's what came of that event:

This picture is not an accident. I took this picture because this is what the sky looks like in Spain.
All of it. Every day. All day

In other news, I have befriended the neighbors' Canadian au pair, Pilar. She and I went out for a much-needed nightcap two nights ago, and now have plans for Madrid tomorrow and Segovia on Saturday. Hopefully the weekend will also include a cameo from Raphy. Of course, I will be keeping you posted.

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