Hola, me llamo Ana, y estoy triste.
Last week in Madrid. This sucks, I’m sad, I don’t wanna leave, and I have no interest in coming home. I’m sorry for everyone who misses me but I don’t miss you that much, I just want to stay in Spain forever. Please don’t take offense to that, you’re just not as great as this country.
Before I get to the actual events of this last week (aka everything since July 14 because I’m horrible at updating this and don’t have enough friends who read it to remind me to update…) let me add to the disaster of Harry Potter for a hot sec. Before we walked all the way to the cine to realize that Spaniards can’t tell time, we took an adventure down prostitute street. Yes, I said prostitute street. (It’s really called Calle de Montera but in reality it is Calle de Las prostitutas so we’ll refer to it as that). There is a street that branches off the biggest night life plaza in Madrid that is lined with prostitutes. Naturally, myself, 5 other students and one of our professors from UC decided to go check it out. After we walked all the way up the street to see all the girls wearing shirts as dresses and more make-up than I’ve ever owned in my life, we decided to have a liiiitle experiment. Have you ever wondered how much a whore costs in Spain? If you haven’t, wonder now, because I will tell you. We had a young college boy with us who loves us enough to play into our ridiculous adventures, and so he separated from us in hopes to get picked up. It worked within less than 30 seconds, no lie, and so he asked how much and for what. It’s 25 euro for 20 minutes of whatever you want. Thanks, Juanito. Then he said no thanks and walked away, however us girls weren’t quite satisfied. Once you pay 25 euro for only 20 minutes of supposed satisfaction, where do you go? So back into the lion’s den Juanito went, and again within 30 seconds he was picked up again. Apparently all these sluts share an apartment somewhere where they can bring guys back to perform their services. Lovely. Spain, please make prostitution illegal, the 4-year-olds dining with their parents on Calle de Montera don’t need to see 37-year-old overweight women groping an 80-year-old man’s junk in hopes to make a few bucks.
ANYWAYS. So last Saturday we took another field trip to Ávila, a walled city in Spain. The city is completely surrounded by walls which were built during some war time to protect the city. Before we entered the city to see all the “cool stuff” we went to some important landmark outside of it that had something to do with St. Theresa of Ávila so we could see the whole thing. While there, some other little family of Spaniards came up to see the city. While they were taking pictures, I noticed one of them had silly bandz, and seeing as I am an ignorant American who doesn’t think before I speak, I yell to Sue who is standing right behind him to look at him because he is wearing silly bandz. He proceeded to turn to Sue and say “…I can understand you.” Awesome, I’m a fool. It’s okay though because after that he came up and talked to me and asked whee i was from and about my life, so maybe he doesn’t hate Americans and I kinda made a new friend. The city was really pretty and cool to see but we walked around way too much, it was 4324 degrees C, and I got too tired so instead of completing the walk around the whole wall I siesta-ed on a random bench on Sue’s lap. I have the best roomie ever. Then we finally got on the bus and I siesta-ed the whole way home.
Saturday night we went to el Kapital, that seven floor dance club in Madrid. It was a lot of fun and we stayed out once again until the metro opened at 6 AM just to say we did it one last time, and so we didn’t have to pay for a cab. Even though I didn’t go to sleep until 7 AM, Sue somehow managed to convince me to get up by 11 AM to go to El Rostro, an open air market. It never ends, there are tiendas and tiendas of random stuff that just goes on forever. We obv managed to drop some euros on some lovely souvenirs, then finally called it quits after about two hours of wandering.
Sunday evening we met our professor Dr. Bryant at Museo del Prado. He works as a curator at the Cincinnati Art Museum and knows a lot more about history and art than I ever will even attempt to know in my life, so he walked us around the museum and showed us all the important paintings and explained all the history behind them. I feel so much more informed.
On Tuesday, we got to try REAL chinese food, homemade by our Chinese friends in our class. I struggled with the chapsticks, but it was deliciousssssssss. Then after class we wet to Parque de Retiro, the largest park in Madrid. There, we paddle boated, saw the only known public statue of the devil, and the memorial for the victims of the terrorist attack on the Atocha train station. There are 191 trees for the 191 victims who died on the train, as well as an additional tree for the “FBI” agent who died during the investigation. After that, we went to the actual Atocha train station to see the memorial there. All 192 names are inscribed in glass, and in a huge bubble glass thing, there are millions of messages inscribed that were left in notes after the attack.
On Wednesday, we just went to the pool and then that night, and did one last Madrid Pub Crawl with everyone. Thursday, we went to Kapital with everyone for one last raging night in Madrid. Friday we didn’t have real class, instead we walked around the city and got coffee/drinks with each of our professors, then got our certificates for passing the class.
Friday night we had one last dinner with María and our host sister, Fai. María and Fai both tried Skyline Dip and Kraft Mac&Cheese and absolutely loved them both. We gave María some University of Cincinnati memorabilia and she gave Sue and I a gift, obv I cried. Dinner was so good and so sad, I was definitely in no way, shape, or form ready to leave María. Then after dinner we went to Casa de Cerveza with everyone who was left in Spain for one last hoorah and goodbye, before heading home to start packing at 1 AM.
It was an amazing last week, an amazing six weeks, but I was not ready to say goodbye.