Marching On: March 6- March 12

14 Mar

Another week in the life. This week was a relatively calm week. The work week was pretty typical and then I was in Madrid for the weekend. Needless to say, I got a lot more sleep than I usually do.

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Afternoons in Segovia

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Sunsets over Madrid

It is coming to that time of the year where many social activities revolve around food. People have gotten recommendations from others or from the Internet and are now clamoring to try the culinary delights that Madrid has to offer.

By Thursday, my plans for the weekend consisted of trying a pizza place, a menu del dia for lunch on Friday, and brunch on Saturday. No other cultural activities planned, just meals. Honestly, not a bad way to plan a weekend.

If you were curious, the food was all pretty good. My favorite was lunch on Friday, where I got a menú del día (which is a set first course, second course, bread, drink, and dessert). Despite the fact that it was a Friday during Lent (oops), I had chicken & pasta, sea bass, and chocolate ice cream. It was quite the meal. One thing I will miss about Spain is the culture of daily menus like this. I always feel like I am getting a great deal for the price I pay and it often saves me the trouble of preparing a lot of food for dinner.

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I have never had fish served head and all

I did do more than just eat on Friday… I also went to a park to stroll around in the gorgeous 70+ degree weather and enjoy the signs of spring: birds, blue skies, blossoms. It was a very peaceful and relaxing afternoon. As I was sitting underneath the trees all I could think about was that a year ago, I never would have imagined myself here. How time flies.

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However, the best part of Friday was the most unexpected. I was on my way back to my apartment after strolling in the park, and making the painstaking decision of whether to nap or to go for a run. As I was walking, I saw a lot of people walking in the opposite direction with gelato cups. Naturally, this captured my attention. I continued walking and saw that the new gelato place near my crib had opened. And, to make things even better, they were offering FREE GELATO for all customers all afternoon. Honestly, I don’t think life can get any better than that. Plus, the line wasn’t even that long. So, I got a healthy portion of dark chocolate gelato and chocolate gelato with nuts. This made my decision a bit easier as I decided to go for a run to burn off those extra calories.

In true ice cream aficionado spirit, I decided to swing by the gelato place after my run as well. Lo and behold it was still open and they were still giving out gelato for free. And so, I hopped back in line. At first I felt bad for getting a second helping, but then I noticed that the group of youths in front of me was the same group of youths who had stood in front of me in line 2 hours earlier. My feelings of guilt quickly dissipated. Unfortunately this time the flavor selections were much more limited, so I had white chocolate with a pistachio swirl. (Definitely not a flavor I would usually pay for). But, I was impressed, and the fact that it was free made it taste even sweeter. So right there was my supremely lit Friday afternoon in Spain: lunch, a park, ungodly amounts of ice cream.

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A few of my favorite things: ice cream and spring blossoms

On Saturday, I decided to go into work for the IE University Open House day. I’m pretty sure my coworkers thought I was a bit crazy choosing to attend on a Saturday morning, but the former Blue Hen Ambassador (tour guide) in me could not resist. It was very interesting seeing the open house of an international university in comparison to that of an American university. It had much of the same structure with information sessions and a resource fair. There were a great deal less people here than even the snowy mid-February Decision Days at UD. I do have to say though, IE University had better food (lo siento Delaware). It was fun getting to observe the Open House in progress and seeing all of the high school seniors made me miss donning that royal blue polo and talking about my love for the good old University of Delaware.

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For the open house, they built a cardboard version of the aqueduct to represent Segovia!

Post open house, I spent some time exploring Madrid. I think I found a new favorite park, that used to be the gardens of the royal palace. It was a beautiful Saturday afternoon and the park was in bloom and the peacocks (yes, peacocks) roamed free. It’s afternoons like this that make me fall in love with Madrid all over again.

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A view of the royal palace from the side

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More flowers, I know

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I have never been to a park where peacocks just roam free

I think that my week could be summed up with ice cream, parks, and flower blossoms. Not a bad week my friends, not a bad week.

 

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