Time flies: it’s already been a month
Today marks one month since I have arrived in Spain. So many adjustments. I have finally adjusted my meal times and have semi-gotten used to the food here. Usually at home I eat breakfast early. The residence hall at my school offers breakfast from 7:30-10:30, pretty usual. For breakfast they serve, toast with jam and butter, cafe con leche, yogurt, fruit, pastries, juice, and cereals. Chocolate milk and hot chocolate also seem to be breakfast staples. Usually I do eat cereal and sometimes coffee, but I’m missing my morning omelette with bacon and sausage :/. Lunch is served from 1:15 to 4:00. And lunch here is the largest meal of the day. You have your first plate and then your second plate of food, served with bread, a salad, and 2 postres (desserts). And dinner is the biggest difference for me. You can eat dinner between 8:30 and 10:30. Again you are given two plates, with salad and two desserts, but the meals are typically smaller. So far I have had some familiar meals such as hamburgers, pasta with meat sauce, burritos,spring rolls, calamari and french fries. However, a lot of the food has been different as well. For lunch sometimes I will eat white rice with red tomato sauce and two fried eggs or croquetas. I really like the croquetas, a lot of tapas bars serve them as well. Croquetas are fried and can have cheese and ham inside.
The residence hall has been an adjustment as well. I love my dorm. It has a bathroom, a balcony, and a miniature kitchen. I share the spacious room with my “compañera” or roommate. Many international students live in the dorms and we were all placed on the same floor, which is great. A few of them are actually from CUNY Baruch! That’s so close to New Paltz. We always get together for lunch and dinner in the cafeteria. The Spanish students are friendly a well. I’m surprised how many of them know English. All of the foreign students I have met know English, and some even a third language. I’m so jealous.
My roommate and I have done our laundry twice here already. Both times we have lost money. The machines require coins and when they are broken there is no sign or alert. You find out after you put your money into the machine. It is a fifty-fifty chance–it either works or it doesn’t. I will get used to this, and one of my friends here told me that I can get my money back, which is good. It is definitely different to doing laundry at home and back at the dorms at New Paltz.
The one thing I have to work on now is finding the time to budget between traveling and schoolwork. I think this will be one of my biggest challenges.