07.10.17 — Journal

First Week At Erretres

As you can probably imagine this week has been a hectic week to top all hectic weeks, as on Monday morning I headed off on the metro to be reunited with the guys at Erretres and begin my first week working as an adult in a full time job – scary stuff!

Off to work on my first day

Coming back to the office was just like coming back home, and after a shower of hugs I presented a gift which I had brought – scones with jam and butter for the entire team. They went down pretty well, although I was upset I couldn’t bring along clotted cream instead.

Anyway, we were soon whisked into our weekly planning meeting and I was soon assigned my first project, which had a quick turnaround – we had to get part of it ready for Friday! Between designing for that however, there were some other things to do as part of the initiation ceremonies, including moving my head for the announcement video on Instagram – here’s Álvaro doing his…

Ready for some dabbing

As usual I can’t really discuss any of the work which is going on behind the big closed metal doors, but I’m having a blast in getting stuck into some big design projects and working with a bunch of cracks (what the Spanish have taken to mean fun people). I’m even enjoying the challenge of balancing the books as an adult, meaning I’ve been making the rounds to Mercadona (a bit like a Spanish Tesco/Aldi combo) to get my 36¢ tins of tomatoes…

Back in the office

Outside of work I have obviously been making the most of the sun before it begins to cool down as October wanes on, including wandering around the centre which is just a few minutes walk from work. I love being able to walk out of the office and be passing the royal palace and gardens in a matter of minutes – and then onwards for coffee and a sunbathe in the park!

Wandering around the city
Passing the royal gardens

As you can imagine the shock of moving from casual hours to full time has meant that I’ve been pretty tired every weekday, but today is Saturday and so I had plans ready to make the most of my free day – tomorrow I shan’t be working either of course but most of Spain is shut on Sunday so it’s a bit of a write off. Last night I couldn’t be bothered to cook, so the owner of my flat showed me a nice local spot to grab some food at, and I enjoyed a lovely seafood cannelloni – something I’d never heard of before!

How I've missed good food

Today was another jam packed day though, as me and my flatmate Heidi had arranged to go out and do plenty of things out and about in the city. We started off at Parque del Retiro, Madrid’s huge public park, where there was an exposition of dogs and cats which were looking to be adopted. We went along to see all of them and I was happy to notice that most had stickers over their little signs announcing that they had found a new home – and also happy that there were so many dogs! I just love dogs.

Changing leaves in Retiro
A very beautiful cat

Once we’d had out fill of our feline and canine friends, we headed to the lake in the park to stop and have some lunch, and we had a lovely long chat whilst I managed to spill all the sweetcorn from my sandwich all over my new white jeans. Genius idea to wear those…

Lunch with a view

I found it really pretty how the seasons are quite visibly changing here, with some of the trees still lush green and others turning a vivid orange as autumn creeps up on us. It’s also definitely cooling down slowly but surely, I woke up with cold toes this morning! Maybe I’ll need to actually start putting a blanket over myself… Que locura.

Changing trains

One we’d managed to find our way out of the park we made a quick visit to Dealz (basically Poundland) and bought some chocolate teacakes to try tomorrow – Heidi grabbed a bar of Cadbury’s Caramel and we certainly enjoyed that as we continued on with our explorations, explorations which eventually took us back to the centre and around the royal palace.

Us two in the palace gardens

It was then time for me to finally visit one of my favourite spots in the city, a tiny little Mexican bar which I think serves the best tacos in the entire city – I’d mentioned it to Heidi and we decided we had to pay it a visit. The food was as delicious as ever, and I washed it down rather nicely with a fresh green apple margarita. I didn’t know different flavours other than citrus existed!

Chilling in the bar

After this Heidi had an appointment to make and I was getting tired, but our progress was stunted by the passing of a very extra baroque-inspired procession. I didn’t manage to shove my way very far forward but I did capture a quick photo of the extravagant outfits of the dressage section…

I want one of those hats

I want one of those hats.

Having just got back to my flat about half an hour ago, and at only 10:45pm local time, I’m already pretty knackered after having been on my legs all day and so I think I’ll probably put myself to bed pretty soon. The day tomorrow will be a pretty relaxed one, as I’ve just to do my washing and a few other admin tasks, and then I’ll probably take myself up to the local park and do some sketching and reading before watching the sun set over the east of the city. It sounds kind of idyllic but I’ll have to report back as to whether it’s as good as it sounds…