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Posts Tagged ‘heat’

With less than fifteen days left in good ole España, I set off on a two part trip: First to the south-west and then to the south-east. I would start by visiting a historically significant town, therefore broadening my understanding of Spanish culture and history, and end on a beach, staring at bright blue Mediterranean waters and broadening my understanding of the Good Life.

Emily and I left for Córdoba last Thursday morning. We arrived during the heat of the day. Spanish heat is unique: it’s dry, it’s oppressive, and suddenly you understand why there is a siesta. It’s recently been so hot in my apartment that candle wax is pliable, and my left-over cookie-making chocolate is melting in the cabinets. Spaniards spend most of the day with the shades lowered, huddling in the shade, and flapping their albanicos (hand-held fans) like their life depends on it. Yes, folks, that stereotypical conception of Spaniards and their flamenco and their hand-held fans is completely true! I also have one, and it’s a life saver.

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I left the States as the sun was going down. The sky was streaked with oranges, pinks, purples, and blues. It was beautiful. Fittingly, we arrived in Madrid as the sun was coming up. I feel like I’ve had a symbolic rebirth. My plane partner was from Madrid, and I started my flight speaking all Spanish.

The plane ride was easy. I have to say, though, I think I’m over plane rides. I slept some, so that was good. My amigo (whose name I never got), is a couple of years older than me and plays soccer for one of the teams here. His brothers go to Mercer, where he had just finished visiting for 3 months. He’s trying to join a US team (do we even have a US team? 😉 ), and move to the States. I didn’t really watch any movies (though there were quite a few good looking ones), because they had to reset the system, which messed up my personal screen. (Natalie will remember the same incident on our plane ride to Madrid last time) But it was no biggie; I read and napped.

When we landed, I began the long trek to baggage claim. From what I have experienced about flying into Madrid internationally, you get off the plane and you just start walking. You see glass, walking sidewalks, and lots of hallway. It’s a good 5-8 minute walk until you finally descend a small flight of stairs and hit the passport check. Passing through was easy enough. The lines were long.
Before I left, I contacted another Fulbrighter and planned to meet her and two others in the baggage claim area. I was worried that since the plane had left late, they would head on without me, but I caught the eye of two Americans, and after a quick introduction, I found my other Fulbrighters! We ended up being 5 strong (2 other girls joined in once they heard us talking), and we never did find the girl that organized the first of us. The taxi ride was easy enough, as was check-in. Now I’m sitting in the lobby of the dorm where orientation is and about to head back to my room for a shower and a nap.

Lunch is served at 2pm (eerrrgghh), and I’m thinking that after lunch, I will get a few others together and we can go walk around in some of the neighborhoods to see where I want to live! I realize now that I’ve been hoping Fulbright will help me find a place–but I’m beginning to think it will be mainly my own responsibility! Scary! But I’ve already met people who have got a place and they say it’s been a fairly easy process.

But: “Not for now, for later” — Right now: Nap Time!

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