Today was an amazingly fun day! We started classes at 10:15am as usual at the Colegio de España, so I woke up at 9am for my usual breakfast, which consisted of crackers/biscuits, a small muffin and 2 mini-pastries, and hot milk with Nesquick. It was quite cold and windy this morning so I was glad that I had packed a scarf with me – I didn’t think I would need it, but I’m glad one of my “just in case” items turned out to be useful after all!
After class we went as a group to the “cafe del internet”. It takes 30 minutes to get back to my homestay from the Colegio so I had to leave after only 15 minutes at the cafe – luckily, Rafa (the owner) allows us to leave our bags at the cafe as long as we come back for them. For lunch Pilar prepared a delicious soup of rice, beans and other vegetables with chicken. I had plans to go out with some of my classmates for dinner tonight so Pilar let me try some of the carrot and potato soup she had planned for dinner – I’m glad I got to try it, at least!
After lunch I went back to the cafe to work on homework. It was a lot easier working together with everyone else on the grammar homework for the day. We had a minimum 500-word composition to write and edit on the difference in social interaction between spaniards and americans – I was a bit worried that I wouldn’t have enough words, so I added Filipino culture in the comparison, but I guess I need not have have worried, because I ended up with 621 words!
After our homework session I headed back home to drop off my stuff and chill for an hour before heading back to the Plaza to meet up for dinner at 9:30pm. I ended up having a bit of trouble finding the group because there was a protest going on about freedom of choice and a woman’s right to abortion. On the other hand, I saw an ADORABLE westie at the Plaza wearing a stylish scarf!
Originally the plan was to head over and eat at Gran Shanghai, but Kathy came over and asked us if we wanted to eat at a bar/restaurant she really liked, and who were we to deny a good tip? So we headed off to Bambú Restaurante, a place literally 30 seconds out of the Plaza Mayor. The inside was really nicely set up, and we were able to find a table for all 9 of us: Kathy, Peter, Alex, Nico, Holly, Faith, Trina, Cecilia, and I.
At Bambu Kathy ordered a bottle of white wine, so the girls decided to order another of the same bottle. Alex and Nico ordered a bottle of rose wine called – it was delicious and really went well with their dish! For our meals the boys ordered a “Parrillada para dos personas” aka a plate of 5 different meats: “panceta, chorizo, costilla, churrasco, morcilla y pimientos asados”. I tried a bit of each because Faith, Trina and Cecilia ordered the same thing for their main course, and I loved the churrasco – slightly spicy and sweet at the same time!
Kathy ordered a salad with grilled fish dish, and I ordered a “carpaccio ibérico con queso de oveja”, a cold cuts dish with sheep cheese and sprinkles of pesto on top. Each of us got a chunk of bread from a waiter as well, which was great because my dish was really rich and tasty and I was able to have a bite of carpaccio with a small piece of bread!
If you want to check out the menu for Bambú, here’s the website: http://www.cafeteriabambu.com/index.php?carta=1
After dinner we met up with the rest of the class to go out and check out the nightlife. At the Plaza after around 10:30pm, people from different clubs will approach you with good deals for drinks (“free for women”, “5 beers for 3 euros”, etc) and hand out fliers/tickets to their respective clubs. We decided to check out this club called Gatsby because it offered free, unlimited drinks for both men AND women. When we arrived, we learned that you had to pay 1 euro for a cup, but got it back when you returned said cup. There were only 3 drinks on the ticket: cerveza (beer) sangria (red wine, fruit, and 7-up or sprite), or calimotxo (red wine and coca-cola). I got myself some calimotxo, which is really good, but I’m still not sure if I prefer sangria over calimotxo. I got home around 2am (because of the 30-minute walk) but I’m pretty sure people let a lot later!