I could get used to this, or I could get superbly frustrated very quickly. I suppose this all depends on how late I am running. The relaxed atmosphere in the metro definitely makes for a more positive riding experience. So far, I have only had one bad metro ride when I accidentally bumped into a man and he blew a fuse, yelled at me and then made a point to move to the other side of the car but still glare at me for the rest of my ride. On the other hand, I got the feeling that he might have been a little bit crazy so I am not getting too worked up about it.
This relaxed attitude that manifests itself on the metro also exists in daily life, as far as I have noticed. I just feel less stressed. Everyone is just screaming, ¨Take a deep breath, Aditi. No need to be so high-strung.” *Side note: It would be kind of cool if someone literally yelled that at me.* Whenever I walk down the street, people seem just as determined and just as focused to reach their locations, but somehow calmer.
As lovely as this has been, there’s another aspect of the relaxed atmosphere that doesn’t quite fly in my book. EPDA – extreme public displays of affection. It definitely brings a different flavor to parks and plazas throughout the city of Madrid. Some have said this EPDA exists because Spaniards wanted to take advantage of the freedom that they didn’t have during the times of Franco (their dictator) and the habits of that generation stuck. Others have explained that the Spanish custom of living at home makes it difficult for couples to be intimate in private, so they choose to do it on a big black thing in the park. –>
Regardless, I definitely feel like a grandma when I shake my head at these young’uns. It’s something I need to get used to, especially since for some reason, I am the only person who notices…or so it seems. People will be siting on park benches a mere 10 feet away from a cuddling couple and do not seem the least bit perturbed. If anything, that’s a good indication that this behavior is completely normal and I should just roll with it. I mean, if that’s the only downfall of living in a city where everyone acts like they’re in the Caribbean, then I’m down to make the adjustment.