What do you do on a somewhat average Tuesday night sitting in your living room?
Turn on Netflix?
Play a board game?
Talk with your family? Some friends?
If we were playing Family Feud, I can promise you none of the answers would be what my friend and I did last Tuesday:
“Let’s go to Barcelona! Friday through Sunday? Let’s do it!”
Studying abroad in Europe makes this more possible than ever. Maybe you take casual trips to go see one of Spain’s most famous cities on a weekend in college, but I never have!
Tuesday, decision. Wednesday, tickets. Thursday, a few classes. (Did you know the CEA program in Sevilla never has Friday classes??) Friday morning, boarding the plane!
Our last minute weekend trip was especially great for one reason: we had a local’s perspective on what is the best to see in the town. We obviously didn’t have much time to look up all that we wanted to do with our time, so what did we do? We got in line to board the plane, knowing we would figure it out when we got there.
But then, we got behind some people in line speaking English to a Spanish woman. So, we came to the rescue and got to help translate (amazing feeling!). As it turns out, this Spanish woman was from Barcelona, and was so excited that we were spending the weekend there.
A few minutes later she told us she was going to write down what we need to see, and by the end of our flight, she had graciously written down three paragraphs of information and sights and maps for us. How amazing is that!
She wrote down exactly how we should use our time that weekend, and in her favorite order! Not only was this a list of places to see, but she even went as far to tell us the most beautiful streets to walk down when going somewhere, which part of town to eat in, which tapas bar was her favorite, and the specific items we needed to order! Needless to say, it was perfect.
So, flying home, we were able to look back at our amazing weekend in Barcelona, getting to see Parque Güell, La Catedral de Barcelona, the local (enormous) open-air market, the Sagrada Familia, Casa Mila (designed by the local architect Gaudí), dozens of beautiful streets, delicious tapas, melt-in-your-mouth pastries, local tapas restaurants, and we even got to touch the Mediterranean Sea for the first time.
Really fun people. Having a really fun time. In some really fun places.
So grateful to be studying abroad in Spain.
Jansen Nash is the Spring 2014 CEA MOJO in Seville, Spain. He is currently a sophomore at Clemson University.
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