So I’ve had a pretty jam-packed week since my last post! It’s been a lovely mixture of playing in the pool with the girls, general lazing around and lots of sightseeing fun. I’m getting more and more used to the routine of the family here, what the girls like to do and just how long it takes them to eat breakfast in the morning… This week the youngest one has taken learning the English alphabet to a whole new level, which means I find myself being forced to sing the alphabet song several times a day and to all her friends.
Sightseeing-wise I’ve been to Madrid twice this week. On Wednesday the father (José) took me to visit the Palacio Real de Madrid which was really interesting and huuuuuge (and surprisingly free – definitely wouldn’t have been in England). I had a mini linguistic revelation upon realising that ‘real’ actually means royal as well as real. It seems blindingly obvious now. We wandered around central Madrid for a few hours and visited the Plaza de España, the Plaza Mayor, Puerta del Sol and the Gran Vía. I played the typical tourist and took A LOT of photos, and tried and failed to avoid the awkwardness of accidentally taking pictures of random people instead of the things they are so inconveniently stood in front of. So after the success of this trip I decided to go on my own. Anyone who is aware of my complete lack of direction and common sense should be very impressed to hear I didn’t get lost AT ALL and even managed to successfully negotiate the metro!!! The only issue was trying to explain to the bus driver where I wanted to go; Majadahonda is a ridiculous mouthful of a word. Anyway, despite this I had a wonderful time wandering around the city and accidentally going on a mini shopping spree.. It was marvellous.
That obligatory touristy photo…
Dancing classes are going well, although I invariably find myself at the back falling over. I suspect I’m becoming a source of entertainment for the teacher.. It’s all good fun though! I went out last night in Majadahonda with some friends from the class (I have friends!!!) which was brilliant. I forgot just how much later everyone does everything here in Spain, so was slightly confused when I turned up ready to leave at about 10ish and no one had actually eaten yet… silly me. Turns out they don’t go out till at least midnight and don’t come home until 6 in the morning…! It’s actually a nicer way to go out because it’s a lot more chilled (as they Spanish generally are) and more sociable. Whilst it wasn’t quite the Palace of Dreams (does Spain have an equivalent!?) it was a brilliant night with actual Spanish music and lots of fun and lovely people. I’ve discovered that no one here actually listens to Spanish music, what you generally find is cheesy English pop music..
I think my Spanish might be improving slightly (or so I’d like to think..), my understanding definitely is! Having studied Spanish linguistics, it’s really cool to notice the things I was taught actually being used in everyday life, for instance the Spanish really do use elision to pronounce words like ‘cuidado’ as ‘cuidao.’ More nerdyness…. One of the topics we looked at A LOT in Spanish this year was regional languages (whether more should be done to conserve them, why they are important etc) so it was really interesting to be able to find out what actual Spanish people think, I was quite surprised by their opinions!
It’s been a pretty good week food-wise. I’ve discovered I don’t like mussels but that carpaccio (otherwise known as raw meat…) is actually not that bad. And I looooove tapas! Siesta time is still a bit of a pickle – I don’t think Game of Thrones is going to last me all summer..