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The house that CEA built (leased)

              The word housing comes with a million questions: what roommate am I going to pick to clean up my trash? How many times a month are we going to have to autograph the bottom of a check? Where's the nearest late-night fast food spot? The crucial questions are hard to answer back at my university, but here, luckily, CEA did an amazing job of helping me along every step of the way.
                It was easy. We chose either to request roommates or be paired up randomly, and if you chose to be paired up randomly, CEA did it by common interest. Boom. That's taken care of. All housing provided by CEA was included in the cost of the trip. Boom. All rent is done. CEA provides a cleaning service every two weeks. Boom. We can see the floor once every two weeks. All electricity, water, and gas bills are included too. Boom. Boom.  Boom. Boom. Checklist complete.
              The area they put me in was called Eixample, which in Catalan means, "extension," a section of Barcelona about 15 minutes from the beach, and is relatively new - added after the Summer Olympics in Barcelona in 1992. It is a pretty quite area, which is nice to come home to and relax. And what kind of apartment did they give us? An amazing one. Absolutely amazing.
               I live with three girls and one other boy. The five of us know each other through one another, and we all requested to live together. The apartment is very big, complete with 2 showers, 4 bedrooms, a kitchen, living room, and balcony. There is plenty of space for any activity (horseriding, etc.), and we got extremely lucky compared to friends in other programs.
              There ARE a couple of downsides to our housing situation, though. First off, it is sometimes tough to stay quiet after 10:00 P.M, a law in all of Barcelona. And, new and unaccustomed to the rule, we sometimes get a knock from the neighbors to remind us how late it is. So the majority of our late night rendezvous are conducted in whisper. Also, living with girls isn't as easy as you'd think. I don't think I've ever seen so much hair in one shower, makeup under the strangest things, pizza toppings on the ceiling, fridge always open, underwear hang drying on the dish rack. And I've heard more gossip then gossip girl herself. I still love 'em tho. And I have to admit, these problems are so minute compared to actual housing problems, they don't dent much into my content with our situation.
             CEA really hooked us up. Normally, housing issues would persuade me to pull my hair out until I looked like my dad (sorry dad, bald jokes will never end), but not here. Instead, I get to stay more focused on the reason I came to Barcelona: to get the foreign experience of a lifetime. And CEA made it that much easier to do so. 

Kenneth Wallach
University of Delaware
CEA Mojo in Barcelona 

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