The journey begins…

Greetings from Los Angeles and welcome to my blog about MADRID! Wooooo!

As you all have probably figured out, I am going to be traveling to Madrid, Spain for the entire first semester of my Junior year. I am leaving September 1st and don’t return until December 21st. I will be a full-time student at Saint Louis University Madrid, an American Jesuit University located in the heart of downtown Madrid.

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I am travelling with 30 peers from LMU, however I will be spending majority of my time with 8 or so of them who are my close friends. Together we are going to take on Europe! While in Madrid for four months, we will be living with host families who are all located rather close to our campus. It makes it convenient to attend daily classes, etc. but will require a little more travel time and effort to get into the city. All the better for immersing ourselves and experiencing the language and people though!

As a group, we hope to travel to London, Paris, Germany (for Oktoberfest), Barcelona, Ibiza, Rome, and hopefully many more amazing places! Currently we are in the process of booking our hotel and flights for Oktoberfest since it fills up very quickly.

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Oktoberfest is a 16-day beer festival (sorry mom and dad) held in Munich, Germany. My group wants to go October 4th-6th because according to one guy’s German friend, it’s the best time to go. Planning the first of our European adventures is getting me really excited for the 4 month journey I am about to make!

Besides coordinating with the group about where to travel this Fall, I have been busy researching flights, and taking care of Visa requirements. Who knew the process of getting a visa would be so hard? I am also trying my best to review and learn tons of Spanish so that I am decently proficient upon my arrival! Any suggestions? 😉

I can’t believe I am leaving in a little over two months. It’s going to be an incredible experience and I can’t wait to share my adventures and photos with all of you! Definitely stay tuned for more exciting updates!

Love you all! Back to my daily intern duties!

xoxo, Adrienne

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One thought on “The journey begins…

  1. Advice:

    Definitely get a Eurorail pass and if you’re flying places, look into RyanAir and EasyJet (they’re the cheapest). Get comfortable with keeping your valuables (passport, $$, train tickets, keys…) safe by putting them under your pillow if you’re asleep in a hostel or held in a purse in front of you if you’re in a crowd (NOT in your backpack and NOT on the shelf above the seat if you’re on a train/bus). Beware the tourist traps (e.g. if someone ‘finds’ some jewelery you ‘dropped’ and tries to give it to you, don’t take it; don’t exchange {much} money at an airport–the banks are better). Don’t use illegal substances {if someone you know is planning to, make sure that they know the penalties for where they are!} and don’t drink very much without people around who you trust to take care of you. If you’re alone, be/stay completely sober. Talk to people about what to do and follow their suggestions; go with the flow and be impulsive; learn a few phrases of whatever language is spoken where you are (e.g. “thank you” and “excuse me”). No matter where you are, it’s better to be there with friends and the best to be there with someone who’s lived there for a while. In the end, the experiences you have there will leave a more lasting impression on your life than the grades you get (as long as you’re still on track to graduate!). Take a camera with you everywhere, and use it as long as you don’t care about looking like a tourist. BRING COMFORTABLE WALKING SHOES (you will walk everywhere). Act like you’re really living in Spain–buy a cheap bike if that’s the best way to get around, open a bank account if that’ll be more convenient in the long run, hang out with the locals (but beware the creepers) and sample all the local food, drink, dances, etc. Wear sunscreen. Never leave anything unattended at the beach. Befriend the random travelers that you meet wherever you go and look out for them–they will return the favor. Always trust your gut.

    Have a GREAT time!!! 😀

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