Madrid!

We left for Heathrow early morning around 6am to catch my 725 am flight. I checked in, said goodbye to Dad and then boarded the plane excited to reach madrid at around 10:45am. While boarding, i happened to meet a couple cool girls both named Ali, and both from Boston College, who were also studying abroad in Sevilla and another one named Janey from Amherst which was cool. It Turned out we had to wait a little bit longer than anticipated to get to Madrid. After boarding, i was really tired so i took a nap. When i woke up, to my surprise i found we were still in the exact same spot and hadn’t moved, and at this time it was around 8am. I asked around, and apparently the plane had been delayed to 9am and i figured no big deal we will be getting there soon as it is a short flight. The delay was due to lots of fog at the madrid airport. Unfortunately, the fog continued and our flight kept on getting delayed. Our flight that was originally scheduled to leave at 745am left past 12pm, so we basically had to sit on the plane for something like 4 hours before takeoff, making it about a 7 hour flight on the cramped airline. Regardless, we were all relieved when the plane had taken off and looking forward to getting to Madrid. We were all exhausted and excited once we landed, and went to get our luggage which turned out to be a whole nother ordeal.

After going through customs, which was surprisingly fast, we went to baggage claim. We stood around for about an hour, and after nothing came out we assumed the worst. We went to the iberian airlines counter, and the guy in front of us said that his bags were in heathrow, and our frustrations began to mount. Luckily, as we approached the bags started to come out and we all miraculously found ours, salvaging what had been an incredibly long and unpleasant start to our journey. We caught a cab to the Hotel Moderno, where we are staying and the about the second we walked in I ran into the Maryland crew which was great. Put my bags down, and we headed off to a restaurant to grab some delicious Sangria, which helped start the trip off right.

We had our orientation for API at 6:30 where the told us some things to expect in Spain, and then had a relatively bland dinner that was extremely long at around 8ish. Afterwards, i was beat form the long flight and the days activities so i called it a night. Madrid has been sweet, and everyone i have met so far has been great. Already so glad i chose to study abroad, and looking forward to all the adventures that await!

-Sahil

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