|Can't complain about this walk to class|
|Spent my first full day in Barcelona exploring the beach|
|The sunny walk to the beach, lined with palm trees|
I finally figured out how to walk from my apartment to the CEA Center and back without friends or Google Maps guiding me. While this may seem like a minor feat, it’s important to understand how directionally challenged I really am. Google Maps regularly escorts me even to familiar places. But having a phone that only works with Wi-Fi has ensured that I learn the 20-minute route on my own. As I walked alone for the first time to my Wednesday afternoon English class, I settled into a leisurely stroll while, to my surprise, my memory recalled all the right streets to cross and turns to make.
|Discovered La Boqueria’s deliciously fruity treats|
Another mini victory keeping me going is that my Spanish is coming back to me. Although I have taken five years of Spanish classes, I haven’t taken any in over a year and won’t be taking any while studying here, so I automatically assumed I would be struggling to interpret foreign sounding español. But as I’ve worked to converse with more locals, bit by bit, I’m remembering more of the vocabulary and verbs I studied for all those years. Now, I can walk into a restaurant, ask for a table, order a meal and get the check, all in Spanish. I’ve asked supermarket workers where to buy medicine, and can completely understand a list of street directions given to me. After imagining myself running around the country speechless for months, this little accomplishment has me feeling confident.
|One of the many amazing meals I've eaten so far|
As my first full week in Barcelona finishes up, I’m excited to discover even more small victories that will help turn this unfamiliar city into a home.
Jennifer S. is the Fall 2016 CEA MOJO Blogger in Barcelona, Spain. She is currently a junior studying English at Miami University.
Jennifer Siegel is the Fall 2016 CEA MOJO Blogger in Barcelona, Spain, and is currently studying at Miami University.