The first week of September: overwhelmingly busy orientation. Very, very, very busy. Typical schedule: Language class starts at 9:10 (which means we need to be up before 8 or so) and ends at 13:40. Then we usually have reunion or sessions until 2:30 or so. Walk back home, and it’s 3:00. Eat “la comida,” and we barely have time to brush our teeth and go to IES center for orientation that begins at 4:00 (yeah, no time for siesta) and lasts till 8:30 or later. And besides having an official orientation, we had our own nightly orientation (or is it disorientation?) to discotecas and chupiterías. I’m not a huge fan of alcohol, but I’ve found many of the drinks here pretty good. My favorites are sangria and mojito!
One night, the DJ turned on PSY’s Gangnam Style and I got so excited. Americans, Spaniards, and a Korean (=I) dancing together with a K-pop on!
At the bars, you can definitely mingle with Spaniards (once school starts,) Erasmus folks (exchange students from European countries,) and other Americans. Parties last very long (till 7, 8 in the morning) but you can come back home whenever you want to.
The second week: many people went on a trip to Camino de Santiago for 5 days. I did not go just because I do not like hiking. It seems like people who had gone to Camino enjoyed a lot!
People who did not go to Camino went traveling–to France/ Italy/Portugal! I went to Porto, Portugal, with eight IES amigos. We stayed there for 4 days, cruising/tanning/sightseeing/eating and drinking
Porto is such a wonderful, romantic city I kept saying “I am coming back here for my honeymoon!”
The third week: IES classes started! I am taking three classes at IES, including one mandatory language course, and two classes at Universidad de Salamanca. I worried so much about the classes–what if I don’t understand anything? I have not taken University classes yet, but speaking of IES classes, professors are incredibly kind and helpful. They don’t speak super fast (as other Spaniards do,) so it is not difficult to understand them. You can talk to them after classes and send them emails and whatnot. Readings are very interesting, and workload is not bad (so far.)
I am looking forward to next week. University classes will officially start, and I will have all my schedule planned out Motto to abide by in Salamanca: WORK HARD PLAY HARD
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<p><span style="color: rgb(29, 29, 29); font-family: Arial, Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal; background-color: rgb(237, 237, 237);">Janice is a junior from Claremont McKenna College, majoring in Government and Literature. Although Janice was born in California, she grew up in South Korea for almost twenty years before she came back to SoCal for college. Janice loves chocolate ice creams, Dostoevsky, ribbons (blue and pink), Korean food, (her) diary and black dresses. She also likes to write stories, cook, bake, and bask in the sun. Janice has never been to Europe and is super excited to spend her semester in Spain.</span></p>