As my time in Barcelona comes to a close, I've started thinking about my experience abroad this semester. Barcelona has been my home since the first week of January. Over these past four months, I have formed friendships with waiters, storekeepers, roadside vendors, and Spanish students. I've discovered incredible restaurants, parks, markets, and bars. I have become a professional in navigating the city's transportation system and main squares. But most importantly, I've embraced a new culture wholeheartedly, speaking Spanish at every opportunity and forming authentic relationships with the locals here in Spain.
While I'm looking forward to returning to America, there are many things about Barcelona that I will truly miss. The city has welcomed me with open arms, and for this I am forever grateful. To follow suit with my last two-blog posts, I've decided to include my top five favorite things about Barcelona that I will miss most when I leave. Barcelona is an incredible place, and I encourage everyone to visit this wonderful city if the opportunity ever presents itself.
5. The weather
Studying abroad in Barcelona during the spring semester was the most pleasant surprise I could've wished for in terms of weather. While my friends back home struggled through harsh winter conditions, Barcelona's temperate climate offered mild winter temperatures ranging between 50 to 60 degrees. When it comes to winter, Barcelona spoils its inhabitants with a generous supply of sun and very little cold.
4. El metro
Before coming to Barcelona, I had never lived in a large city and was unfamiliar with public transportation. I was presently surprised to find that Barcelona has one of the quickest, cleanest, and easily navigable metro systems in Europe. With metro stops conveniently located throughout the entire city, there is always a cheap way to travel from one neighborhood to another. For example, I was able to hop on the metro and arrive in the central square of Placa Catalunya in eight minutes. Or if I wanted to visit the beach on a sunny day, I could take a different metro line to Barceloneta and have my feet in the sand in less than 25 minutes.
3. Ease of travel
Barcelona offers an incredibly convenient departure point for traveling throughout Europe. Most flights out of Barcelona are generally very well-priced, with direct connections across all of Europe. What's more, it's very easy to travel to the airport as a student. The Barcelona Aerobus departs from the main square of Placa Catalunya and drops you off at the El Prat airport for only five euro.
2. The fruterías
As any one of my friends would tell you, I cannot survive without fresh fruits and vegetables. To my delight, I've found that Barcelona has hundreds of "fruterías" lining the streets that offer fresh fruit and vegetables at great prices. I will miss walking to class in the morning and stopping in one of my favorite fruterías to grab a fresh pear or juicy plum.
1. The people
What I will miss most, however, is the everyday interactions with the people of Barcelona. The locals here are genuine, kind, and incredibly generous. They are always willing to offer their time to help answer questions or point you in the right direction. They are also very friendly and possess an openhearted demeanor about them. Before coming to Barcelona, I had never experienced such friendly and truly genuine people. I will greatly miss the friendships I've developed with the people of Barcelona while abroad this semester.
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<div>I am a junior undergraduate at Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business, majoring in Marketing & International Business. I am also a member of the Kelley Consulting Workshop — a program geared toward building analysis, presentation, and teamwork capabilities for a competitive career in consulting. I am currently pursuing a career in Marketing Strategy and Brand Development. As a value-driven individual passionate about holistic health and well-being, I continue to search for new opportunities to contribute to the health and longevity of our people and planet.</div>