As my days left in Barcelona tick down, I can’t help but reflect on one of the most important aspects of my trip: the people I’ve met and interacted with. I’d like to take the time here to formally thank them for their role in my life during this semester.
First and foremost, I’d like to thank my host mom, Mercedes. You have shared your home, your fantastic and creative meals, your laughs, and your life with me. You are such an incredibly strong woman and you cared for me so well, both physically and emotionally. I am so lucky to have had you as my host mom.
I’d like to thank my roommate, Deja. I loved sharing advice and stories with each other. You are so genuine, relaxed, and fashionable. You have always been a comforting presence and it’s been fantastic having you as a roommate. Also, thank you for waking me up at 4AM so I didn’t miss my flight. You’re a lifesaver.
I’d like to thank my BCC, Carla. You’ve always been available to help us girls in your neighborhood in any way possible and are always up for a hangout. I love the way you live your life and I love who you are. I have no idea how to express how much of a positive impact you’ve made on my life while here whether it was watching a movie, planning an outing, answering culture questions, or just talking about life.
I’d like to thank my IES Abroad professors Alex, Karyn, Nuria, Adil, and Ana. I love your passion and expertise in the areas that you teach and for putting up with us students’ occasional lack of preparation and motivation. It was extremely evident that you made an effort to make class as relevant and interesting as possible and strove for constant improvement. I can tell that you really cared about us.
I’d like to thank the transcultural research team at Vall d’Hebron Research Institute, especially, Lucia, Ana, Nataly, and Paco. Thank you for dealing with my blank stares to most things you’ve said in Spanish and dealing with my warming up process while I got to know the ropes. You have been so inclusive, generous, encouraging, helpful, and fun which made it so much easier to go into the office.
I’d like to thank my new friend, Christie. You are so goofy, real, and smart. You have dealt with my incessant anxiety about life and gotten me out of my apartment, whether to a bar down the way for chocolate and red wine or on a plane to Berlin. If it weren’t for you, I might not have left Spain let alone my neighborhood. I am so glad to have made a friend like you and I can’t wait to see you sometime very very soon in the States.
I´d like to thank Alison for bocadillo dates and good laughs. I’d like to thank Olivia for always being there to talk about boys and Alaskan salmon. I’d like to thank Shivika for check-up texts and life chats. I’d like to thank Maria for her sass, Allyssa for exploring Granada with me, Danielle for pleasant pre-class conversations, and so many others.
And I am thankful for all my classmates. I’ve met people from all over the U.S. and all over the world and it has been so incredibly refreshing to learn about you and your lives. I have learned so much from YOU even if all we’ve had is a single silly conversation or shared comment. It is incredible to think that, had I not been here, at this time, in this place, I never would have met you and been able to see a part of your life and share a part of mine.
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<p>Hi all! My name is Emma Ropski and I'm a senior sociology and psychology major at Hope College in Holland, Michigan. I am a middle distance runner on the track and field team there and love it to bits. My interests include the sociological imagination, thrifting, lifting, daytime judge shows, and gorditas. I am so excited to share my study abroad experience in Barcelona with you!</p>