My First Madrid Experience

Hello,  my name is Suzanne and I’m an 18 year-old girl from the Netherlands living in Madrid for a month now. I came to Madrid on the 25th of August for my internship. The next four months I’ll be living in Madrid, on my own.

This is the first time I have lived on my own, and had to find out how all the simple things work. At the beginning I thought I would understand most things… well, I didn’t. I had to find out a lot of things I never imagined that could be hard. For example finding a supermarket, and also buying food, which is really useful, how to cook healthy food, and how to do my own laundry. I am really lucky that I have a super mom, who I called at least 3 times a day, to help me out. It was at the beginning a little clumsy, but it also brings you on funny moments. I couldn’t even eat my own food the first two days, I would probably die if I did.

Also, I live in a completely new city! Which is cool, but I got lost so many times. The new city I have never been in before, with a language I can’t speak, and a new culture. The first weekend I was in the city I was couldn’t find the most simple things and I was not able to ask people on the streets. It was sometimes annoying but it also brings me to places I wouldn’t go otherwise, maybe because I didn’t know they existed, or maybe because there was just really nothing interesting going on there. Well my first weekend I spent exploring the city quite a bit.

But for me it was also hard to be on my own, for the first time. I didn’t know people in Madrid so I had to find new friends, my room was a bit lonely and small. I grew up in a little village in the Netherlands where I know almost everyone and I love my family very much, but when I came in Madrid no one knew me. Most of the time I am a really social person, but all my skills left me when I needed them.

I share my flat with 9 other young international students. I met them and they helped me out, taking me out for dinners and also helping me with cooking. I went to parties in the city, international student parties, which I really recommend! Almost everybody speaks English so it is easy to meet new people. One big tip from me, just ask their numbers, keep in touch with them, and remember, everybody is in the same situation and looking for new people to hangout with. I didn’t go to parties at my own, I have an amazing roommate who I asked to come with me since she also wanted to meet new people. The plus point of going to parties is the getting to have some drinks too, which makes talking to new people much easier. I don’t think I am the only one who experiences that when you drink a little (just not too much, otherwise you will have a lot of new numbers, and you won’t remember any of them).

Now I have lived in Madrid for exactly a month, and I love it! I have met so many new people, all over the world. The weather is way better than in the Netherlands and I go out a lot. I can’t say that everything always goes the way I planned, but I think that I can’t expect that from myself. I love Madrid, the friendly people I have met, the food is good, and the whole experience of living in my own is so nice. Yes, my room is a mess, and I still can’t cook, but hey, that is OK – I can handle that. I can’t wait to see what the next three months brings!

Written by: Suzanne