Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Good & The Weird

What I'm really liking so far…

1. Having sangria every night. (I'm talking the 1 euro gigantic bottle I have sitting in my fridge like it's Kool-aid or something :))

2. The weather. Pleasantly mild during the day and cool at night.

3. Friendly Spanish people. I hope it's not just because we look foreign, but locals have been so kind and considerate - from the guy on the metro whom I accidentally hit with my bag to the patient store owners who let us practice our Spanish instead of forking over the "dos empanadas carnes, por favor!" and shooing us away. So many "perdons" and "no pasa nadas" with a smile. Love it.

4. Our program, TtMadrid. More on that later. But basically, if you're looking for a TEFL (teaching English as a foreign language) program in Spain and you want the best, go here.


Some struggles (These were manageable but by no means convenient :))

- REGULAR coffee. You know, the normal black kind to which you add cream and sugar?! I'm sure this was mainly a language barrier problem on our end, but we couldn't wait long enough. So, our solution: Buy fresh grounds from Starbucks and buy our own little trusty coffee maker.

- The customer is always right….not. While most American companies cater to their consumers (like 80% about the consumer and 20% the employees), in Spain it's more like 50/50. That means hours of operation are limited, and stores just do their own thing in general. Difficult when you are trying to get things done, especially on the weekends. Our solution: If it's open, shop in bulk.

- Finding our cooking repertoire. Thank goodness for pasta and sauce - always a good go-to when you don't have time, money or the whereabouts of sliced turkey. Or ground beef. Or chicken. Or peanut butter. Or salad. Or fresh milk (most places have this power milk stuff, or milk-in-a-box…. not for us:)). Our solution: If you find something you like, buy a lot of it. And remember that store! (I'll blog a list of top ones eventually)

6 comments:

  1. AH! Embrace the cafe con leche! It's SO GOOD and you will crave it when you get back to the states!!! Also, try jamon, spanish sheep milk and anchovies (dont ask questions, just try). and sangria is water. WE MISS YOU!!!!!! So glad to hear you guys are enjoying it so far! Cannot wait to hear more. <3

    ReplyDelete
  2. like the wallpaper and black keys! very masculine! very matador!

    ReplyDelete
  3. This is the beginning of me wanting your life! Glad you are having a great experience :D

    ReplyDelete
  4. Do they have parmalat? (they had that in Italy and Germany) it be just like regular milk, its ok I promise

    ReplyDelete
  5. Sounds a bit like Guatemala. I remember feeling frustrated coz the ten things on my "to do" list would take 10x longer than in the states :/ But you will miss the culture and the wonderful laid back way of living. I still miss it. LOOOOOOOVE your posts...I haven't gotten on very much lately so this was a good catch up for me. :)

    ReplyDelete