Wednesday was the time I used to sit at home and contact all the landlords/landladies/Apartment occupants from Idealista to make appointments to see the pisos they were offering. Wednesday was a chill and accomplished day. On Thursday, I met up with Sa diaa for breakfast. I got to know Sa diaa before I came to Spain. It began when I posted a question on the facebook page for Girl travelers in Madrid. Sa diaa saw my post and contacted me immediately. She was happy to know a new muslimah would be coming to visit her city. She told me if I needed anything or had any inquiries, I should feel free to contact her. At that moment I was overjoyed. Finally I am in contact with a Muslim living in Spain. This made me feel a little bit assured that my stay in Spain would be nice. I didn’t know how many Muslims there were in Madrid neither did I have a Muslim’s perspective on living in Madrid. Sa diaa couldn’t have contacted me in a better time. Our breakfast was great, we chatted happily as if we’d known each other for decades. For breakfast we had the famous Churros con chocolate. It was so delicious. If you have a sweet tooth like I do, the image below would make you salivate immediately.
After breakfast we had a quick selfie and then I headed out to the piso viewings.
The first apartment I saw wasn’t really to my satisfaction. It had a door handle that was broken and it was just not my style. I told the lady I would get back to her. However the apartment I saw in the evening was really to my liking. It had a huge closet, more modern. I told the landlady I really liked it, although it was a little bit beyond my budget and had two months fianza. The landlady told me that there was a girl that came earlier and it would depend on if she wanted it or not. I was already getting desperate and frustrated with the whole apartment business. I had only 3 days before my stay with Margarita was due. I just wanted unpack my belongs in a place where I could call home for the next 10 months. I had asked Margarita earlier during the week if I could extend my stay and she said no because there were many people who had booked with her. The pressure was high. I immediately booked another airbnb place so I could have peace of mind for a while.
On Friday I got a message that the apartment I was interested in was taken, so the girl agreed to it( of course she did, it was really nice). So frustrated, I decided that this day I would have a break and not worry about apartments. I contacted Alessandra to hang out. We took a walk around Madrid, had one of the best 3 course meals for only 11 euros. I had never been so full, aA. The meal consisted of appetizer, main course and dessert. The desert I chose was yogurt with strawberry mousse.
I couldn’t believe we sat there for 2 hours. This is something I have noticed about Madrid. The waiters don’t rush you when you are out to eat. They let you take your time. You actually have to beckon them over 3 times to let them know you are done. So yeah time passes by here quickly without you noticing it. After lunch, we took a lengthy walk to the famous Retiro park which was just beautiful.
At the end of the day, I went back home and had the longest siesta ever!!
On Saturday, I saw two apartments which were both horrible. The first one had the landlady’s belongings in the room I was supposed to move into. Mind you the landlady lived in Barcelona.
In addition she didn’t want to provide me a contract when we spoke on the phone. The second apartment was basically in a ghetto like area. It was in the afternoon and I felt thoroughly terrified while walking through the barrio. “I swear, I cannot live her” I said in my mind. But I honored my word and went to the apartment. Upon getting there I called the landlady. No reply. “ok, that’s weird” I thought. I called again, and every time I did she, cut it off. First I thought it was a coincidence but I quickly realized she was doing it on purpose. I then texted her in Spanish confirming that we had an appointment,right?. Still no answer. So here I was standing in front of a desolated, unsafe looking area, hoping someone wouldn’t kidnap me and I was being bailed on by the landlady. At this moment I was beyond furious. I sent an angry text saying how evil she was and asked if this is how she treated foreigners. I stomped back home angrily with tears in my eyes. The whole apartment thing was so just so frustrating. That Saturday, I vented to Margarita and even told her that since my time was going to end on Sunday, I would be going to another airbnb place. “Donde?” she asked. I told her where. “That place is scary. You can stay here longer” was a her response in Spanish. “Oh really?” I asked somewhat relieved. “ yes!, until you find an apartment” she said. “Muchas Gracias, Marga!” I said. So happy, I canceled my airbnb meeting with lady who was really nice about it.
After meeting several viewing where either the piso owners were crazy, creepy, had others in mind; I finally found somewhere that was nearly perfect. The landlady was nice. It was just 3 mins from where I stayed with Margarita. I even had an extra roommate, Pancho ( the cat). It took me 10 days to find an apartment. Alhamdulillah, it all worked out some how.
My experiences in the first two weeks that I just narrated were the most hectic in my life.In those two weeks, I cried and laughed a lot. I was forced to learn how to make the best out of a stressful situation and sometimes just laugh/take things lightly for my own sanity.