With my departure date only a week away, I can’t help but think of all that I have fallen in love with during my semester abroad. Here is a list of the things I wish I could bring back home with me:
Let me specify, inexpensive delicious food. The fact that I can get a bocadillo and large coffee for 2 euros in between my classes is insane. Also, just the other night, my friends and I went out to eat at a nice restaurant. Three courses later, I spent less than 20 euros.
My host mom
Words can’t express how much I appreciate everything my host mom has done for me. She has been a huge part of this experience and I cannot imagine what my semester would have been like without her. If you are still deciding between a homestay or the residence hall, I highly recommend staying with a family.
Two-hour lunch breaks
It was nice not to feel rushed eating. This midday break was perfect for getting some work done or simply enjoying a siesta before my afternoon class.
No Friday classes
I don’t think I have to explain this one.
Travel across Europe
Here is a typical Monday conversation with my classmates:
“Hey how was Dublin?”
“It was amazing. Did you enjoy Lisbon?”
“It was beautiful but I think I prefer Amsterdam.”
I’m sure I don’t have to tell you that studying abroad is the perfect time to take advantage of the opportunity to visit different countries. However, don’t forget about Spain! Each region has something special to offer.
Living 900ft from Zara
Well maybe for my wallet’s sake, leaving this behind would be for the better…
Spending hours at a restaurant
Not only is it totally okay to do here, but it is actually a norm. Waiters are not rushing you through your meal in order to get a high table turnover rate. I can enjoy my food and the company I am with without feeling pressured to open up my seat for the next customer.
My walk to class
I will never get tired of being surrounded by beautiful architecture. I pass by buildings every day that were constructed before the United States was even founded. In fact, USAL is celebrating its 800th year anniversary next year.
My new friends and family
Okay, I know, super cheesy but it’s true! My semester would not have been the same without all the people with whom I get to share this incredible experience. Whether they are from Spain, from a different school back in the States or even from Gettysburg College, they all played a huge role in making my time abroad unforgettable.
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<p style="margin-bottom:12.0pt"><span style="color:#404040">My name is Isabel but unless you’re either my mom, dad or nurse calling me in from the waiting room, I go by Izzie. I am a rising junior at Gettysburg College pursuing a major in the Health Sciences with a minor in Spanish. I have traveled outside of the US before (namely the Philippines where a lot of extended family reside) however, visiting a country for vacation and being totally immersed in it are two completely different experiences and I can’t wait for this new adventure in Spain.</span><span style="text-autospace:none"><span style="font-size:16.0pt"><span style="font-family:"Times",serif"> </span></span></span></p>