Why I Decided To Do Erasmus in Madrid

Right before I was leaving my university, my journalism professor told me I should keep a blog while I’m doing this exchange. It took me two month to start, but here it is: a diary of my adventures.

In this first post, I would like to share what has brought me here, to Madrid.

Why Spain

It all started five years ago, when I took my first Spanish class in American high school during my exchange program in Oklahoma. And I simply fell in love with the language.

The journey continued in American University in Bulgaria, where I currently study. From the freshman year, I was taking Spanish classes and dreaming about Spain. For some reason, it felt like that is the country where I should live. I’ve never been here before, but I was right. Spain makes me happier than I ever was.

Here is the view of Madrid center from the rooftop cafe. Photographed by me.

Why Madrid

Madrid was my first choice on Erasmus list, because it is a capital (=a heart) of Spain, and because Barcelona was not on the list. I honestly love big cities, especially after studying for 3 years in a small Bulgarian town. Madrid is exciting, beautiful, and inspiring. In addition, people here speak Castilian Spanish, which is the classic one.

Here is the Puerta de Alcalá monument in Madrid. Photographed by me.

It is here that my adult life began. Just the fact that I have my own room and a kitchen makes me so happy. (I have been sharing a room at my university for three years). I love the independence, and being here on my own is such a wonderful experience. From doing yoga in my room, to making dinners every night — living alone is lovely.

Why Exchange

As I have mentioned before, the goal number one of my exchange is to learn the language. I truly believe that it is only possible when you start to use it in your daily life. Not as a tourist, but as a local. At least that is how it worked for me with English.

People here talk incredibly fast. My first days I had to make a fool of myself so many times because of the misunderstanding. And it takes courage to do so. But that is how we learn.

Now my classes are in Spanish, and I don’t have a problem understanding two-hour lectures on History of Advertising, Brand Management, or Public Relations. Moreover, I have to write papers, and even present in front of the whole class in Spanish. It is extremelly challenging, but somehow I go through.

Thank you for your attention. I hope to share more with you in the following posts.

Anna Salova