Orbiting Time

Anna Suszynski
February 3, 2015

            Time passes differently here. I wake up and the sun hasn’t shown its face yet; it hides behind the Sierra Nevada mountains until close to eight o’clock. In the states I wake up with ample time to eat breakfast, because I adore breakfast. But here I eat less, less in general really. I reluctantly get out of bed in the dark and slowly begin pulling on clothes and stumble into the kitchen. I have a smaller cup of coffee– barely a cup. I pour cereal into a bowl with a pig’s face on the outside. My host mom, Fabiola, is usually still asleep. Morning light filters through the apartment as I walk out the door and begin my thirty-minute walk to school in Plaza Nueva. I have to build in blocks of time here, just for walking and seeing. And I like it that way. There is so much to see.

            I pass by many plazas on the way to school. I cross a river and through an elegant walkway with bare trees on either side. Oranges catch my eye on every corner, their glinting skin winking in succession among waxy leaves. Then I cross into el centro and finally to the IES school, situated coincidentally across la iglesia de Santa Ana. A beautiful, old neighborhood extends behind the school with views of the Alhambra. Sometimes during breaks I wander the small streets, I fall into the same cadence as I adopt in hiking in Colorado. The alleys are like unexplored trails and the houses like the forest.

            Sometimes mid morning I get café con leche at a place across the street. It comes in a small white cup the size of my palm. Coffee is social here, so is food. There is always time to share. To share the collective experience in broken Spanish and giggles. We don’t eat lunch until around two thirty in the afternoon. I am starving by the time I manage to finally unlock my apartment door after a dizzying five flights of stairs.

            Sometimes the whole family sits down for lunch. Sometimes it’s just my roommate, Fabiola, and I. We stay sitting for a while, Fabiola eventually gets up to cut an orange, some pears, and a banana. The other day we had a kiwi. She sprinkles sugar on top and gives us a small fork to eat it. La siesta is after lunch until around five o’clock. Nothing is really expected of you– a time of day for yourself really. Some people take naps and I walk around the city.

            The days seem to last longer here. The afternoon light extends into the evenings, and the evening light into the morning. Bars extend your life span a few hours and the tapas even longer. If you’re in bed before eleven, it’s strange. The days seem so long. I might have to start using siesta for what it was created for. Time and space– they revolve around each other in different orbits and I love it. 

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Anna Suszynski

<p>My name is Anna Suszynski and I live in Colorado. I will graduate in 2016 from Colorado College having studied to be an English major, Creative Writing Track. I love to read, ski, go to as many concerts as I can, hang out with my mom, hike, take way too many photographs, and get lost.&nbsp;</p>

2015 Spring
Home University:
Colorado College
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