InterNations Featured Blog
Recommended Expat Blogs: Madrid
Everybody who has spent time in a different country knows that expat life is not quite like anything else in the world. The confusion of the first few days and weeks, the slow, but steady process of acclimation, the little peculiarities and quirks that might strike you about your new surroundings: almost any situation you encounter can make for a great story. If you are so inclined and want to blog about it, of course!
Our InterNations recommended blog section features talented expat bloggers from around the world. Their offerings to the blogosphere have been selected for their great entries and high quality, whether they may be funny, informative, interesting, deeply personal or a combination of all of the above.
Let’s hear from our featured bloggers in Madrid:
Everything about my life has changed since I left the US, but most of it is simply because I am no longer a student. I left the states directly after graduating from university, so I became completely independent for the first time here in Spain. I remember that it was confusing at first to adjust my eating schedule, but now I have it down—coffee at 8:00, breakfast at 10:30, lunch at 2:30, a snack at 6:00 and dinner at 10:30—true Spanish style!
Well, I really enjoyed my first year in Madrid. Although many things were different than what I was used to back home, it wasn’t like a massive culture shock or anything. I came to Madrid with open expectations, not knowing whether I would stay for six months or a year so there was no pressure for me to “make it” here. I learned early on that being flexible to new circumstances is the best way to enjoy being an expat. Just rolling with whatever life throws your way makes your life so much easier.
I am now in Madrid. It's a common cliché that the Spanish bureaucracy is worse than most. While I have a cache of anecdotes illustrating this, there is one current situation that best underscores this. While I have yet to receive my permanent residency approval (over 1 ½ years in “tramite”), I already qualify for citizenship.
If I could prepare one thing, it would have been to have gotten my driver's licence here in Spain before they made the test harder! In Barcelona I didn't need a car, the city is quite small and easily navigated by the Metro. I also lived right in the city centre. Here in Madrid, the distances are incredible. I definitely am kicking myself about that!
Learning a new language always comes with funny moments, usually centered around words similar to your first language or words that are similar to each other. In my case, I frequently mixed up the Spanish words lentillas (lentils) and lentejas (contact lenses), and accidentally told people, on more than one occasion, that I was putting lentils, instead of contact lenses, in my eyes.
I am from Grenoble (France), but I have always thought that Madrid was the perfect city to live in. The expat community is very friendly and life here is much easier than in Paris or Grenoble. Beautiful weather, perfect mix between urban lifestyle and nature, nice people…
I didn’t prepare anything!! I didn’t think about anything!! All I knew was that I wanted to leave the UK. I met a Spanish bloke and came here. I was too young and dizzy to think of the consequences. If I could go back and change things maybe I would, but I can’t regret my past, it’s made me the person I am now.
Are you an expat blogger and would like to be featured here? Get in touch with us!