We began our day early this Sunday morning as we were leaving Barcelona and traveling to Madrid by train. Personally, I felt bittersweet emotions leaving Barcelona. On one hand, I felt excited to greet a new city and see what new adventures would await us there. However, on the other hand, I felt Barcelona still had so many places it wished for us to visit. In the short amount of time we were in Barcelona, it had become to feel like home to me. Navigating the metro and walking from place to place were some things I was just starting to get accustomed to. Barcelona also helped bring our LWL group closer together thanks to our living arrangement here in the city. You quickly become comfortable with one another when you share one apartment with fifteen others.
We left our apartment and made our way to the train station in Barcelona. Once aboard, we all made ourselves comfortable as it would be a three our ride. The natural landscape on our way to Madrid was very beautiful and a nice change from the city scene. Large mountains and wild fields decorated the land we passed and made it hard for my tired eyes to want to rest in fear I might miss an incredible view. Alas, we were all tired from our early departure that at one point or another we all rested our minds and enjoyed a nap on our way to Madrid.
When we arrived to Madrid, I could already feel the difference between the two cities. Barcelona had been fast paced, loud, and the streets were almost always heavily populated. Madrid, on the other hand, felt like it ran at a slower pace and the streets did not seem too populated. Our schedule for the rest of the day was a walking tour of Madrid and dessert afterwards. As our tour guide showed us around the city he would point out buildings that dated as far back to the 14th century. He made us aware of how “new” our own country was compared to some of the landmarks we passed by. Our tour guide was also very helpful in explaining the way of life in Spain and the people’s view of politics in their country. After our tour, we headed to Chocolateria San Gines to have dessert as a group. Our sweet treat consisted of fresh churros dipped into delicious melted chocolate. It was the perfect way to end a busy day of traveling and sightseeing. I have to say, so far I am excited and looking forward to see what other treasures this city holds for us.