walking around

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¡Hola!

I remember that before arriving in Spain, one of the things our program managers encouraged us to pack was at least one good pair of walking shoes. Now looking back, I see why. Ever since I arrived in Spain, one change I was quick to see was my step count, or rather the increase in my step count. This makes a lot of sense since I pretty much walk everywhere. I walk to class, shops, food places…home. From the beginning, one of the first things I noticed was that people here walk more in comparison to my home city. Part of it might be due to the fact that the city itself, Salamanca, is much more walkable. Additionally, Salamanca being smaller and more centralized might also contribute to it. However, I feel like a lot of people also just like walking for the joy of it, “para andar”.

At first, I was not used to this increase in walking, but as the days passed by I became somewhat accustomed to it. I now see a thirty minute walk as “not bad”, while before I would have thought a walk like that would leave me “gasping for air”. Nevertheless, I do think that this walk would feel different from one back home. A walk here feels “easier”, for a lack of better words. A twenty-five minute walk does not feel so long, especially when the weather is nice. This is more or less the commute I have to do to get to class. Now, when it gets cold or when there is wind or rain, that is when those walks home from school feel long, but it is always nice to see that my roommate and I are not the only ones that are rushing to get out of the bad weather to get home and eat.

Walking to class has also helped me practice my time management because now I take more into account the amount of time it will take me to get there. I know that when I am feeling a little lazy, I should leave a little earlier, so I can take my time walking. I also know I need to leave a little earlier depending on the shoes I am wearing or the weather (from personal experience rainy days slow me down). This time management strategy doesn’t only apply to my commute to school, but also to when I have to meet someone, have to run errands, or when I have to make sure I make it in time for dinner.

Sometimes I would start my morning commute just before the sun was out, and was able to see the sunrise, but now that the weather and time has changed, I begin my walk when the sun is already out. Either way, I enjoy watching people walk and start their day. I see parents and children waiting for the school bus, people heading to work and students heading to class. People of all ages walk all throughout the whole day. Now that the weather is starting to get warmer, I’ve noticed more people walking and eating at the tables outside the restaurants, it makes the city feel very much alive. Well, this is all for now, but I look forward to talking more about other things I’ve noticed! ¡Hasta luego!