Mija Lieberman | Madrid, Spain | Post 4

Mija Lieberman | Madrid, Spain | Post 4

I would say it’s officially fall in Madrid, as of a few weeks ago. It’s not as cold as Poughkeepsie, but I have to bundle up in a jacket and scarf and closed-toed shoes with socks. But Spaniards are already bundled up in winter coats, hats, and gloves like it’s winter. It’s no longer warm enough to casually go for a stroll in retiro park, but it’s the perfect excuse to get a hot coffee almost every morning. Luckily, for…

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Mija Lieberman | Madrid, Spain | Post 3

Mija Lieberman | Madrid, Spain | Post 3

I can’t believe that my program in Madrid is now more than halfway done. This is the longest I have ever been away from home. It’s certainly hard at times being away from my family and friends, and I’ve gone through the ups and downs of home sickness already more than once, but I’m trying to remind myself to take advantage of the limited time I have in Europe. I finally bought my plane ticket home (I wasn’t on the…

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Michael Gambardella | Madrid, Spain | Post 3

Michael Gambardella | Madrid, Spain | Post 3

A lot has happened since my last post. For starters, my parents came to Madrid to visit me about two weeks ago. They had just finished a bike trip around Cataluña, the northwestern autonomous region home to Barcelona. We spent the half-week they were here in Spain running from museum to museum (El Museo del Prado and The Thyssen), walking from end to end of Madrid despite my repeated pleas for a taxi, and eating delicious food that was definitely…

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Mija Lieberman | Madrid, Spain | Post 2

Mija Lieberman | Madrid, Spain | Post 2

I am now officially in Madrid living with a host family in an apartment that is only a five-minute walk from Puerta del Sol, the center of the city. I couldn’t have asked for a better location, and there is a metro stop right outside my apartment. The rastro, the biggest flea market I’ve ever seen that takes place every Sunday, is also just a couple of blocks from my home. I have my own room with plenty of space….

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Michael Gambardella | Madrid, Spain | Post 2

Michael Gambardella | Madrid, Spain | Post 2

Greetings from Madrid! We touched down in Madrid two and a half weeks ago after a general orientation in Galicia, an autonomous region in the northwest corner of the country. Life in Madrid has made a few major changes in our day-to-day lives. First and foremost, we’ve all moved in with our host families, which was an experience in and of itself. Su Casa es Mi Casa I lucked out with my host family. It’s just Mama Tata, Don Juaquin,…

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Natalie Brabson | Madrid, Spain | Post 4

Natalie Brabson | Madrid, Spain | Post 4

On the eve of my spring break, I feel quite happy to have experienced all that I have in the first part of my semester, and was inspired to write in a different style than that of my previous posts. Things to be grateful for… In Madrid 1) Parque Retiro Much like Central Park of New York City, Parque Retiro is plopped in the middle of the city, offering a tranquil refuge from metropolitan life. Here, one can walk, run, paddle…

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Natalie Gerich Brabson | Madrid, Spain | Post 3

Natalie Gerich Brabson | Madrid, Spain | Post 3

I am now very much immersed in life in Madrid, and a significant part of my life here is my university studies. The process of choosing and enrolling in classes took an unusual amount of time for me, because I decided to take two classes at a second university that had a later start than the program’s home university. In total, I am taking five classes this semester. Three are at Universidad Carlos III—the university where the Vassar-Wesleyan Madrid program…

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Natalie Gerich Brabson | Madrid, Spain | Post 2

Natalie Gerich Brabson | Madrid, Spain | Post 2

I have been in Madrid for almost a month, though I cannot decide if it has seemed much longer or much shorter than that. Because of the nature of constant learning that is part of studying abroad, time has felt blurry. Each day, I learn new Spanish words, customs, and mannerisms, and because a couple classes I plan to take will not start until next week, I have yet to fully figure out my schedule. I still feel far from…

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Natalie Gerich Brabson | Madrid, Spain | Post 1

Natalie Gerich Brabson | Madrid, Spain | Post 1

This semester, the Vassar-Wesleyan Madrid program started on January 7. Due to the polar vortex that hit most of the U.S., which manifested as a blizzard with “Arctic cold” temperatures in Western New York, my original flight out of Buffalo was cancelled. Rescheduling my flights was stressful and tedious—I spent about eight hours trying to reach someone at JetBlue. (Thousands of people’s flights had been cancelled, and the lines were so busy that the phone operators generally cut you off after a…

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Marie Solis | Madrid, Spain | Post 4

Marie Solis | Madrid, Spain | Post 4

As I write this, the familiar scent of mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie is probably filling up your house, inspiring you to be nice to your parents even though they’ve already asked you too many questions about school and your love life. Or maybe you’re bickering with your sister. Or maybe someone forgot about the vegetables roasting in the oven. In any case, I’m sitting in class in Spain right now, and the only thing I smell is my own unpreparedness for…

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