Going to a neighborhood different from the neighborhood I have lived in for many years was overwhelming. Not knowing where I was and what resources I would have available for a month compelled me to find my home ground in Barcelona. As I walked the neighborhood I was able compare myself living in Eixample to living in my neighborhood in Round Lake, IL.
After settling into our apartment, I was looking for a grocery store from which to stock the apartment. My roommates and I walked around the block and found a mini supermarket across the street. Being able to buy my own groceries and cook made me feel at home. Its a 24 hour supermarket that is in a walking location for us to go anytime to get groceries. This was convenient; In Round Lake IL, If I ever needed to go shopping at 12 am I would have to drive 15 min to go to 24 hour Meijer. It is more motivating to walk across street at midnight than it is to drive 15 minutes.
In my daily commute to work or school back home, I always stop by coffee shop to get coffee on the go. After searching for a while in Barcelona, I found Francesco Cafe around the block. The thought of getting coffee on the go everyday made me feel very comfortable. Although, walking around in Barcelona, I noticed that no one takes their food on the go. People in Barcelona enjoy their food sitting down, while immersing themselves fully in conversation with their company.
I found a park behind our apartment. Passing the park, I felt relaxed. There were restaurants to eat, benches and big walk ways to sit and enjoy the environment. Back in Round Lake, we have a park with a pathway but less activity. There is a huge field of grass with a few benches for people to sit. I wish we had something like this park in Barcelona near my home. I barely see neighbors in Round Lake. At the end of the day, I go straight in to my house. Having an interactive place would help build the community and relax.
Here in Barcelona, everything is conveniently available through walk. This builds a great community within the neighborhood. I want to build the same community in my neighborhood. I would like to take the environment that they have built here as well as the convenience of everything being so close together, back to Round Lake.