A Farewell to Barcelona

Jessica Ramirez
December 28, 2017

            This is it. My final blog post about my experience in Barcelona. It’s the final chapter in a book I have yet to fully comprehend. It’s my goodbye to the city I have fallen in love with, and the incredible experiences that came along with it. If you must know, I have been dreading writing this last post. Not because I haven’t had the time or I have nothing but horrible things to say about my experience, but because I find it difficult to sum up all that I have gained throughout these past 4 months in Barcelona. It’s hard to fit a whole semester’s worth of joy, sadness, excitement, and everything in between within just a few hundred or so words. So, in these next few paragraphs I will try my best to sum up all that Barcelona has given me, and to give it the farewell it deserves.

            Looking back to my very first post, my main concern was distance. Never before had I been so far away from my family, and for such a long period of time. And although it would be nice to say that distance was not an issue throughout these past few months, that would simply be a lie. During my months in Barcelona, I missed my family at every moment. I called my parents every day, trying to somehow share this experience with them through our phone conversations. While I was gone I missed weddings, engagements, and births, which are memories I will not get to relive. Yet, I learned that my family is more central to my being than I had realized, and that it was important for me to share this experience with them. Although I was missing precious memories at home, I had so many new and exciting memories to share when I got back. That’s why these blog posts were incredibly therapeutic for me, because they were the means through which I could communicate my new reality with my far away loved ones. But even through that struggle, I learned that I was stronger than I thought. I faced frightening experiences, entirely new countries, and a multitude of problems that I dealt with independently. So although that distance was difficult, it also gave me the opportunity to discover the strong, independent woman that I always was.

            And all of this growth, all of these new life discoveries, could not have been possible had it not been for the city of Barcelona and all of its inhabitants. Barcelona was the main stage for the emotional and exciting adventure I lived out this past fall. And for that, and so much more, I am forever grateful. It is an incredibly beautiful city, with a deep history and culture, but it was also the people of Barcelona who played an important role in my experience. My host parents were the adopted family I needed to care for me during these past months. They helped open my eyes to this new and exciting city so that I could immerse myself in all its wonder. And so today I can say with great joy that the city of Barcelona will forever be in my heart, and I will cherish the memories it has provided for me. I now know that I have a second home half way across the world, and I look forward to my return someday soon.

Adéu, Barcelona!

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Jessica Ramirez

<p>I am a young Latina student who is passionate about travel, community empowerment, and celebration of diversity. I am the only daughter of Mexican immigrants and my life has been a colorful blending of Mexican and American cultures that has created a passion for the exploration of diverse cultures through travel. In all that I do, I try to learn about and immerse myself in worlds and communities unlike my own, because with each experience I grow as a conscious global citizen and will be able create bridges that can bring about positive social change in communities throughout the world.</p>

Destination:
Term:
2017 Fall
Home university:
Santa Clara University
Hometown:
Santa Clara, CA
Major:
Marketing
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