Salamanca has been absolutely amazing! We love it here and it has proved to be even more wonderful than we expected. The years, months, and weeks building up to our big move were full of expectation, fears of the unknown and the stress of getting through all of the red tape to actually get here! Now that we’ve arrived, found a (freaking fantastic) place to live and are settling in our ways, we are so happy that we’ve made the decision to move our lives to Spain.
After a super long, but overall not too horrible, plane ride we arrived to Madrid. The two downfalls of the flight were that after having had the isle seat in a 4 seat row we had to move to the two middle seats because a woman faked and illness (yes we are sure of it) and then understood why she faked it to be on the isle: the man next to her didn’t understand the meaning of personal space to save his life and took up more than his fare share of limited space. Patrick saw the look in my claustrophobic ridden eyes and chivalrously took the seat for me. I ended up sitting next to the faker and was rather thankful that Patrick is so kind to me! Poor guy! The other problem was that my feet and legs swelled up so much that I could hardly move my (c)ankles at all! I had to get up and walk around quite a bit (and didn’t care one bit that I made the faker have to get up so many times) to keep them under control but it didn’t help too much. They didn’t return to normal until about three days later. C’est le vie.
We had a really great time in Madrid with our dear friend Rafa. I’ve known Rafa since my first time living in Spain 10 years ago in Oviedo. He is, as are all of my Oviedo friends, so generous and is a lot of fun. We didn’t do too much in Madrid because Patrick and I have both been there a few times and we were both pretty tired from the trip as well. We did have a nice stroll through the Parque de Retiro and sat and read in the sun for a while.
We were both pretty anxious to get to Salamancato find a place to live and to explore our new city. We left Saturday morning on the bus and the moment we crossed over the Río Tormes we felt at home and were completely in love with our new city! We stayed at a very nice hostel called Hostal Sara which I would recommend to anyone coming through Salamanca. The rooms are very nice and some have kitchens. The best part was the helpful and super friendly staff. I now have one of the receptionists phone numbers and have promised her a coffee date in the near future.
We were able to find a super wonderful piso very close to the university and the Plaza Mayor. We feel very lucky to have found the place that we did at the price we’re paying! It was a random coincidence too. The landlord didn’t even put it up online so not a whole lot of people knew about it. The downstairs neighbor happened to be in the Hostal one day and told them that if someone comes in looking for a flat to call his number. Completely random. We were at the right place at the right time. That’s pretty much how it happens in Spain anyway!
We have spent most of the first part of our days “getting our life in order”. This has included myself meeting with someone at the university at least once a day to get paperwork in order and being sent around the city to talk with someone else who can’t help me just to be sent through 10 people and then back where I started from. It’s also included trying to get our foreign ID cards, bank accounts, internet, etc. and has kept us quite busy. We’ve also been having a ton of fun walking around the city and taking pictures and seeing what there is to see!
We are lucky that this past week has been the week of the feria of Salamanca which is a huge celebration that happens once a year and the whole town is involved. There are parades and fireworks and super cheap food and drink (2 Euro for a pincho or tapas and drink) and a whole lot of fun. This isn’t anything compared to Rose Festival folks! The streets are literally packed full of people with no where to turn but into someone! It’s truly a lot of fun!
Overall, we have had an amazing time getting to know our town. It’s really great and we are so happy to be here. Next week we’ll be heading to Oviedo, the town I lived in before, to see some old friends and celebrate the feria of Oviedo. That’s right, we’re doing this all over again!