Tag Archives: jakebarba


It’s the last one

Wow. It’s the last one. Just this one last blog post and I’ll be done for good. You, gentle reader, only have five hundred more of my eloquent words before this all goes away. I may have mentioned this before, but I am well-traveled, in Europe at least. I’ve been to Spain, of course, and […]

Luisa and Jake

My Host Family

I’ve talked far too long without going on about my host family. Sure, I’ve offhandedly mentioned how wonderful they are or how they pointed me to El Rastro, but I haven’t gone in too deep about what makes them amazing people. I’m not sure I’ll be able to convey it here, but I’ll give it […]


Goiko Grill

I’ve just got one final though about food. That is, I’ve got one though about food that I’m going to write down. It concerns hamburgers in Spain. Now, I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking “Jake, why the hell are you going around eating hamburgers in Spain? That’s probably the most American thing you could […]


Spanish Food

There was always going to be a post about the food. When you think of typical Spanish cuisine, what do you think of? Paella, right? Tapas, of course. There’s a good chance you like a nice gazpacho to go with your lunch. Some people like to erroneously suggest that ceviche is a Spanish dish, when […]


My UAM Classes

JACOB BARBA- I promised to talk about my experiences at UAM one day, and that day has finally arrived. First, a little background: the university lies outside Madrid, about ten minutes’ drive to the north. I take the train, so that translates closer to thirty minutes for me. In Spain, the public universities are the […]


Why Scaring Children Is Lots of Fun

JACOB BARBA- Boo. Settle down, I didn’t mean to spook you. It is, at the time of this writing, just after Halloween, and I’ve broken my years-long tradition of doing nothing fun to celebrate the holiday. One of the program staff, Sergio Barreiro, is pretty heavily involved with a Halloween Zombie March, and naturally some […]



JACOB BARBA- I don’t drive in Spain. I can’t drive. It’s not just the fact that I don’t have a Spanish license, either. I can barely drive around a city on a good day. I have nightmares about parallel parking, and my blood boils when I have to turn down a one-way street in the […]

El Rastro de Madrid

El Rastro

JACOB BARBA- I mentioned to my wonderful host family that I had bought a few shirts on calle Gran Vía, a street full of huge department stores and also a pretty good McDonalds. When they asked how much I paid for the shirts, they scoffed. “You could get ten shirts for that much in El […]


Program Classes

JACOB BARBA- So let’s talk classes. I’m a History and English major. You may be thinking that Spain might not be the best place to pursue an English major. You might be right. However, I’m lucky enough to have access to a university with a multitude of offerings with plenty of opportunities. Anyway, anything here […]


Gluten-free Madrid

JACOB BARBA- Hey there. How’s it going? That’s great to hear, really. I hope whatever elderly or sick relatives you have are doing well. Do I hear you ask who the person is at the other end of the computer screen making baseless assumptions about you and your loved ones? Let me introduce myself. My […]