I recently started taking the bus to class because my host family lives pretty far away from the plaza and university. My host parents were really great about explaining how the public transit system works and which bus to use. (Spoiler alert: I use Bus 4, not Bus 12). Basically, I have a rechargeable card that I add money to and use it everyday. The bus is quick and easy, I love using it because I can escape from the intense heat for a few minutes. Beyond that, I get some time to myself where I can think about my day and my favorite memories. Often times when studying abroad with a group, you are all together for a good majority of the day. It's great because you get to really know you're peers. However, at the same time, some alone time is necessary. Anyhow, I enjoy my 7 minute bus rides because they provide an undisturbed amount of time to reflect on things. Getting to class, the plaza, or anywhere near in that area is fantastic because I feel confident in riding the bus. I assumed that I could take the same bus I took to arrive at the plaza, to take me back home. Wrong! I guess I missed the part of my host parents' detailed explaination where they told me to walk a little further, and then get on another bus 4 to return home. Well, since I didn't get the memo, one day before I was leaving out of town for the weekend, I ended up on going on a city tour of Salamanca instead of returning home. It took about 1.5 hours for the bus to finally make my stop. I definitely learned my lesson, and even though it was neat to see other parts of Salamanca, I was never about to make the same mistake again. After that day, I searched for the bus stop my host parents told me about. Unable to find it, I resorted to walking home. I wasn't too unahppy, because at least I was saving myself one trip of walking! I got into a routine of taking bus 4 in the morning and walking home afterwards. One day, I woke up from my siesta (nap) disoriented about 30 minutes before my conversation class at 5 PM. I was waiting at the stop and becoming impatient that bus 4 had not yet arrived. Unsure of what to do, I hopped on a bus 12, knowing it wasn't bus 4. I figured there would be at least one stop somewhat close to where I needed to go, and that something was better than nothing. Wrong! Bus 12 goes straight to the other side of the river, which is about a 25 minute walk from the center of Salamanca. Upon realizing what a stupid assumption I had made, I quickly got off the bus and began figuring out how to get back. In the far far distance, I could see the cathedral. I used that as my point of reference and plugged in the address into my phone. After walking across the bridge and into the center of city, I had finally made it to conversation class 24 minutes late. Since that day, I have stayed far away from bus 12. And I'm happy to report that after some wandering around last week, I discovered the bus stop I was looking for! I now use the bus to and from school and it is absolutely wonderful. If you ever need help navigating the buses in Salamanca, I am your chica!
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<p>My name is Sri Narayanan and I am a junior at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. I am studying Biology and Spanish with med school aspirations after graduation. At school, I am involved with Medlife, student government, and research. Outside of class, I enjoy meeting new people, retrieving stolen possessions from puppy, and traveling. This summer I will be spending four weeks in Salamanca, Spain. It will be my first time in Europe and I am incredibly excited to explore Salamanca, make new friends, and enjoy the different foods!</p>