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Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Walking through a foreign city

At the end of my stay in Alcala de Henares, I walked across the city by myself. At four o'clock a.m. It was a beautiful, quiet city, the birthplace of Miguel de Cervantes. I was there on a study abroad and it was my very last day in the country. As I walked from the flat where I'd spent the last 7 weeks towards the main square, I saw no one. Not a shop was open. The fountains and the lights played with the shadows. I met my friends by the statue of Cervantes, then we wandered out of the city to watch the sun rise.
We came back to the square around seven in the morning and I caught a bus back to the flat. I'd packed my things up around one a.m., so I only had to eat breakfast, shower and catch the train. My roommate helped me haul my 2 suitcases to the train station. I boarded my train with the suitcases and my backpack and sat down. Then, I realized I didn't have my cell phone. Not willing to go home without it, I ran the blocks back to the flat (suitcases in tow) and called up to our dueƱa. She let me in and I dashed up the stairs, grabbed my phone from the drawer where it had sat the last seven months, re-said my goodbyes, and flew back to the station, still hauling my suitcases by myself. I caught the next train just in time. That wasn't the end of the adventure, though. When one of my suitcases rolled away from me, a nice Romanian guy rolled it back to me and we struck up a conversation. I think he was concerned that I was going to get lost and miss my plane, but I knew where to get off the train and catch the metro. I said goodbye at Nuevos Ministerios and caught the metro that would take me to Barajas airport. Despite the cellphone incident and only two hours of sleep, I got there in plenty of time to check in and board my plane. I arrived in Salt Lake City on schedule.