Who doesn’t love cultural differences?! I do! I’ve been living and working in Spain for almost 5 months now; and while there are obviously some huge cultural differences between the states and Madrid, there are also some little differences that I think are pretty funny.
1. They always use gridline notebooks
You know those notebooks you only used for AP Calculus, yeah they use those for everything here. Another weird school supply I’ve noticed is that people don’t use mechanical pencils they use the wooden ones, but these pencils don’t have erasers attached to the end.
2. The ground level of a building is 0.
If you push “1” you will go to the floor we usually refer to as “2.” I feel like their way makes a little more sense, seeing as how the ground floor is the 0 floor, and the first floor is the first floor up. Come on, America.
3. No coffee creamer.
Say goodbye to your beloved Sugar Free Hazelnut coffee creamer. Coffee con leche is the only way to dilute your favorite brew here.
4. Wine is cheaper than water.
If you go to a restaurant, or if you’re at a bar don’t expect to get a free glass of water. Un vaso de agua will usually cost you around 2 euros, whereas a copa de vino will only cost 1.50 euros. No complaints over here.
5. Spanish people eat 5 meals
Yes, the meals are smaller, but I’m referring to them as meals because, unlike snacking in American, these tiny meals happen around the same time every day.
- The first meal is breakfast and they usually have a pastry or piece of bread with coffee,
- The second meal is around 11 where people have another coffee with a small sandwich, a piece of tortilla, or a pastry
- Around 2:30 they eat lunch which is the biggest meal of the day,
- The fourth meal is around 5pm and I’ve noticed people eating mainly small sandwiches, salads, fruits, or yogurt
- The last meal is dinner (a light meal:soup, salad, sandwich, etc) around 9:30-10pm.