Year Abroad #Madrid: ten days left. what?!

December 9th, 2014:

I haven’t written in a while as I have not been leading an interesting life at alllll.. Yet to be honest, every time I sit down to write something, my brain just seems to stop functioning. This post started with the title “Twenty days left” and ten days later…. It is as if I’m having a permanent writer’s block. Even though I’m not necessarily writing a flipping novel! Thus, I will try to fight this block. But the result may be as dull as dishwater… (you have been warned!!)

First, the topic of my Happy FM job. I’ve been going to work every day and writing complete trash about Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez and their tumultuous relationship, Kim Kardashian and the possibility of hiring a surrogate, Taylor Swift’s long legs and many other moments of the celebrity world. It’s still lovely to work here as there’s never any stress and the people who work here are very friendly and sometimes quite entertaining. I also know many songs off by heart now that I would never know if I hadn’t done this! The office plays the radio all day long so you can’t really avoid it.  It’s lucky I love music! 🙂

With few days left in this beautiful city, I am ready for the next step of the year abroad and a change of scene. Especially Christmas!! I’ve realised Christmas is so much more important for us English lot that it is for Spain.


During the last weekend of November Emma and Emily joined me here in Madrid. They are fellow friends who do Spanish and have been spending their year abroad in other parts of Spain. Emma in Santander and Emily in Cadiz! It was absolutely lovely of them to contact me on facebook to tell me that they were coming. It was one of those moments where you just feel that little bit extra happy. 🙂

We spent Saturday walking around the city and seeing Christmas lights, then on Sunday they came over in the evening for dinner. Two of my flatmates and I ended up making a bit of a feast, with Spanish tortilla, grilled chicken, vegetables etc. Following with crepes and Nutella for dessert!!

Madrid Christmas Lights 2014
Madrid Christmas Lights 2014

I did have a “year abroad moment” whilst I was with the girls on Saturday. It was when we were walking from the Gran Vía to the centre square, Sol. As we neared the edge of the big open space teeming with people, and the big gold metal tree loomed above us, it was as if it dawned on me that I was living abroad.  I stood there and thought about how the past six months have passed. How much I have changed, grown and learnt from people, places, experiences, myself, situations etc.

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The next (and last) visitor of my time here in the Spanish capital is Lucy Kennedy. This is someone I haven’t seen in twelve years. She moved to Austrailia when we were half way through Year 4 at Beenham Primary School and I can’t believe we’ve met up again. I am so happy the Facebook exists – well, any social media really – and the opportunity of finding friends from the past. It was amazing how distance and time can have so much yet so little effect! We managed to see all of the main sites and the centre of Madrid in two days. We walked for seven hours (pretty much) on the Monday even though we did wake up at half twelve after being up late watching a film!! It was a beautiful day. I will miss the weather here. Even though it was about eleven degrees, the sky was bright clear blue with the sun beaming down and illuminating the city.

Now, I am on the serious countdown to home. Lucy left this morning so I am dying to get back. I almost jumped on the bus to the airport with her because it made me feel so close to home. My parents have been sending me a couple of videos of decorating the house in Calgary with loads of Christmas decorations. I was a little sad when I saw it because I wasn’t a part of it. But I was mostly envious! There isn’t a similar Christmas vibe here at all in Madrid. Except for the lights, the city remains pretty calm. I imagine the stores in the UK playing Christmas music, the rush to buy presents or hoping to snag a deal, the cheeky purchase of mince pies and dairy milk “Christmas” chocolate, and basically using the “Well… it is Christmas!” excuse to do all of the above. I always find it a great time a year to give to those who have made your year a splendid one. 🙂

So I’ll leave you with this. It is a wonderful and beautiful song:

Big love in the run up to Christmas.