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Well, we’ve been in Spain for 3 months now.
There have definitely been ups and downs with moving abroad that we have felt over the last 3 months. As you can expect, the highs are fantastic and lows are, well, lows.
We are, however, settling in quite well here in Madrid, and it’s starting to feel more like home. So let’s do a quick review of what month 3 of living abroad brought us.
Yes, as November turned to December—or early November turned to mid-November…—the weather here in Madrid got a bit colder. Fortunately, it’s nothing like Wisconsin though.
The weather swings from mid-30s in the morning to about 50°-60° during the day. However, for a while in late November the daily highs were in the low-40s, which made for some chilly days!
It’s made it for a bit of an adjustment, especially as we spend so much more time outside walking around, but if this is as cold as it’s supposed to get in winter, we can’t complain at all!
At the end of November, right before Thanksgiving, we celebrated Mike’s 33rd birthday!
Although it was a regular ‘school night,’ we went out and had a nice dinner at a restaurant that we’ve been wanting to try Casa Lucio.
Becca also surprised him with a trip to Logroño for the weekend! It’s a city in the north of Spain in the La Rioja region of Spain, and is most famous for it’s delicious pinchos and wine.
We’ll get to that trip in a second because we had Thanksgiving in between his actual birthday and the trip.
Thanksgiving is not celebrated in Spain, so like Mike’s birthday, it was a regular working day for us, as was the day after. We did get to celebrate with some friends from all over the world and traditional Thanksgiving food.
Although it took a while and some research to find some of the ingredients. Luckily, there’s a store call Taste of America in Madrid that helped us find some of the more specific Thanksgiving ingredients.
Our spread included: turkey, sweet potato casserole, green bean casserole, mashed potatoes, mushroom tart, stuffing, mac n cheese, pumpkin pie, and apple pie.
We missed being home on Thanksgiving, but then again, it didn’t 100% feel like it was Thanksgiving here since it was a normal work day and no one else really celebrates it.
The Friday after Thanksgiving, we headed up to Logroño, Spain by bus from Madrid. It’s about a 4.5 hour trip with short stop in the middle.
While the weekend wasn’t 100% planned out since it was a surprise, Becca did contact a bunch of Mike’s friends from when he lived there 5 years ago without him knowing, so there were some set plans.
We spent the weekend eating and drinking our way through the famous Calle Laurel and really disconnecting and spending time with friends.
Unfortunately, that means we don’t have a lot of content to show you from there, but it was a relaxing break to travel a bit without focusing on content for our next post. We do actually love traveling while getting content, but this trip helped show us how wonderful it can feel to disconnect when traveling. It’s probably something we will continue to do in the future from time to time.
On November 26th, Madrid got into the holiday season and turned on its Christmas lights throughout the city. We were in Logroño when they had the official countdown, but we’ve spend plenty of other days wandering around and admiring all the lights and Christmas markets in Madrid.
Puente! – Ávila
While we didn’t have a long weekend for Thanksgiving, we did have one the week after! Monday and Wednesday were national holidays: Constitution Day and Day of the Immaculate Conception.
In Spain, when there’s a regular day between holidays or weekends they call it a puente because most workers have off that day too.
On this puente, we had the weekend off, Monday for the holiday, Wednesday for the holiday, and then Tuesday in the middle off too because why go into work for just one day?!
This is a concept we love and believe the US really needs to get behind the idea of the puente. You know nobody is going to get any work done that day anyways, so what’s the point?
We spent the December Puente around Madrid after being gone the previous weekend. Plus, accommodation anywhere was super expensive since the entire country had a 5 day weekend. We did find time to take a day trip to Ávila though!
Ávila was a magnificent city with a stellar Medieval wall surrounding it. Check out what to do in Ávila in our post on a day trip to Ávila or YouTube video.
What We’re Looking Forward To:
Christmas break is fast approaching, even if it doesn’t seem like it…
Our last day of school is December 22nd, and we are off until January 10th! That’s because the big Spanish Christmas celebration is actually on January 6th: el día de los Reyes Magos (Three Wise Men/Kings Day).
As most educators can attest to, we’re really looking forward to the long break!
Take a look at some traditional Spanish desserts and what they taste like!
Our original plan was to travel to Milan, Italy during winter break. However, with the rises in COVID cases throughout Italy, Spain, and the world, we decided to stay put in Spain.
Hopefully, we’ll be able to travel a bit around around Spain, but as with everything nowadays, it’s still up in the air.
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