Monday, August 29, 2005


I wish....

I wish IESE had some arrangement with some hostels like YMCA or a big hotel who wanted to capitalize on the IESE brand to let incoming students stay for at least 2 weeks or so in the beginning of the MBA program. As the first day of the Intensive Spanish course comes closer, I can see many students looking for a flat. Some don't even have a temporary place to stay. Paying 100 bucks per night in a hotel is the worst but might be the only option for some of these people.

I am sure the "pregunta" of planning comes. In case you are wondering what a "pregunta" is, its a Spanish word for a "question". You can see, I am building up my Spanish vocabulary. The problem with planning a place to stay comes with the uncertainty of the length of time in getting a Spanish student visa. If you happen to apply at an extremely inefficient and un-cooperative embassy like the one located in New Delhi in India, finding a flat is the last thing in your mind. The infamous Spanish Embassy in Delhi deserves a separate blog. Will write that blog soon.

Saturday, August 27, 2005


packing stuff in supermarkets

One new thing I found in Barcelona is that you have to put the groceries in the plastic bags yourself. I am not annoyed by it, I just found it strange. In the US and Nepal, I never had to do that.


The first visit to IESE Business School

Finally, we went to see IESE Business School on Friday. Kapil, my friend from India, accompanied us to the school. I had been waiting for that moment for so long as I was not one of the lucky ones who got to visit the school before they applied or before they made a choice to go to IESE. It was like a 10 minutes walk from the nearest FGC station. FGC is one of the subway systems that take you to different parts of Barcelona.

The school was smaller than expected in the beginning but I guess for the size of about 400, it is not that small. I made an analogy to a small doll beautifully decorated with every detail given full attenton. The lawns were nicely mowed. The famous building that I have seen in the pictures looked same, if not more beautiful. We went to the bookstore to check out the price of a book we needed to buy for our pre-courses. Unlucky me, I should have bought the book back in Nepal where it is much cheaper. I have asked an Indian friend of mine to bring one book for me, lets see if that will work out.

Some classrooms and the cafeteria were under construction. After spending some time seeing the school where I will spend 19 months of my life, we were walking out. We wanted to take some pictures with the front view of the campus but the security guard
didn't let us do that. It was surprising that I couldn't take the front picture of my own school. We did however take some pictures inside the school. It was just near the gate that we were not allowed.


My first few days in Barcelona

My wife Srijana and I are now in Barcelona. We arrived here fine
on Wednesday.We had some language issues in the airport when taking a taxi. The taxi drivers didn't know any English at all. So we had to ask a lady for help who knew both English and Spanish.

The first day, we were very tired. With our minimal language skills,
we were able to find a grocery store and an electronics shop. We bought juice and water from the store and a power socket that fits into the Spanish system from the electronics shop. We needed that power socket to hook our laptop. Luckily, this place is steup with wireless internet connection, so we were online by the same evening.

On thursday, we got our phone from the same place from where most of the IESE students get their phone. It has a minimum charge of 6 Euros a month and the simple Nokia phone is for free. We don't get charged for receiving calls. Outgoing calls are 5 cents a minute to same service users and 10 cents a minute to other users in Spain. In the evening, we went to the most happening place in Barcelona called La Rambla. It was a very crowded and fun street, reminded me of Harvard Square and the walkways near Charles river. The weather is perfect here. It is neither too hot or nor too cold. At 10 in the night, we went to the "Bar of the Week(BOW)" event organized by 2nd year students. We met some 2nd year students and many 1st year students there in a bar. Srijana also met some partners of the students going to IESE. It seemed like she was busy chatting with them and enjoying the talk.

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