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Gap Year Abroad

14 posts from February 2013

02/28/2013

Sevilla + bici = Sevici

One of the things I love about living in a city is that you can walk everywhere. Back home I have to drive everywhere.Thanks to the community bicycle program in Sevilla, called Sevici, I have been biking all around Sevilla.
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I ordered a Sevici card a few days after I arrived in Sevilla and about a week later it arrived. There is a Sevici stand right outside my apartment complex, so it is very convenient.

Although…it takes about five minutes to get to the bike path from my house and sometimes it can be very difficult, especially in the morning since there is a school right by my house and people are always dropping off their kids at the same time I leave for school.

ALso, some people simply refuse to move out of the way. I don’t mean to discriminate, but tit’s usually older people. Every bike is equipped with a bell, and no matter how much I ring it, the old people will never move out of my way. And I don’t think it’s because they don’t hear me, because the bells are very loud.

On my way to school every morning I always come close to hitting at least one person, wether it is a pedestrian or another biker. And that’s on a good day, it’s usually more like two or three people.

Although the bikes aren’t the best, considering the bells don’t always work, the seats tend to fall down while you are riding, and if you are really unlucky, your brakes might not be working. But that’s why I always check before I take a bike out.

There are many bike stands all over the city, and each one has a kiosk where you scan your card. The card itself costs 28 euros, but if you take a bike for longer than a half hour, you have to pay 5 cents for every extra minute, or something like that.

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Although I still prefer running to biking, it has grown on me. And it’s a great means of transportation.

 

02/26/2013

Cooking with Cheer

Cocinado con Pedro
Ingredients required:
-A knowledgable Spanish chef
-A cozy apartment
-A tiny kitchen
-Lots of laughter
-A sense of humor 

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    Hello everyone! I figured I'd take a break from my usual trip to the gym to bring you this belated blog post.  Back to the kitchen we go- last week, me and 8 other gap girls signed up for a free Spanish cooking class.

 
    Let me just repeat that- Free. Cooking. Class. There was no way I wasn't going.. luckily, Pedro, our instructor, was nice enough to make enough food for a village (although 9 hungry teenage girls can do work, there was definitely leftovers!) 
We made Salmorejo, a typical Andalucían cold soup similar to Gazpacho, and Arroz Campanero, similar to Paella but much simpler- perfect for anyone interested in dabbling in Spanish cooking without slaving the kitchen for hours. Of course, we took an even lazier route and helped Pedro here and there, but for the most part, we watched his amazing knife skills and let him do most of heavy stuff. Hint: Click on the words to get recipes that I've found on google for you if you want to try the recipes for yourself.
The class was a blast, and something I would definitely do again. Although I'm dying to learn how to make Paella, the process is intense and Arroz Campanero is just as delicious and much faster. I personally would omit the oyster mushrooms but to each his own! 
This Friday, Saturday and Sunday, I will be in Morocco, so expect some exotic blog posts this weekend. 
-M.

 

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Hayley and Emma getting down to business! 

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Our post-cooking feast- ahem, dinner.


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Steph and Salmorejo vs. Hannah's shielding hands!

02/25/2013

Spanish Hospitality

This weekend was my first full weekend in Sevilla since I’ve arrived. On Saturday I had the privilege of sleeping in, and then I met up with Guillermo. Guillermo is a friend of my cousin Kristin. It turns out she did an exchange program when she was younger in Sevilla and she stayed with his family. Guillermo actually came to Sea Isle as well. Kristin gave me his email, and after a few hellos back and forth,  he called on Friday evening to invite me to spend the day with his family on Saturday.

He and his wife Ana have an adorable three months old son named David. He was seriously the cutest baby I’ve ever seen, and he was almost always had a smile on his face. Guillermo’s niece Luz was visiting from Granada this weekend. Turns out she is 19 as well. Since she has never been to Sevilla we walked around to many of the touristy places, but we also visited many neighborhoods and back alleys I have never seen before.

The center of Sevilla really comes alive on the weekends, everyone is outside eating or drinking something, or just walking around and enjoying each other’s company. There was actually a band competition yesterday between several high schools, and I saw lots of other people dressed up in outfits, but I’m not sure for what.

When I first met up with Guillermo, he and his family were having a drink in Plaza El Salvador. This place is always packed on Friday afternoon, and on the weekends as well. After we walked around for a while, we decided to eat. This however, is not as easy as it sounds. Anna and Guillermo had wanted to take Luz and I to a restaurant called Baños Arabes, which is supposedly very good. It did look very nice inside, but it was full. So we found another restaurant, but there were no tables with enough room for the stroller there, so we continued on to another restaurant. We finally found one that looked promising, and we all sat down in the sun, except the waiter never came. So after about 40 minutes we left. We went to a restaurant in another neighborhood that was much less touristy, which I liked. Although the restaurant wasn’t the best (I’m just quoting Anna on this one), it was really relaxing to sit in the sun for a few hours and practice my Spanish. I actually spoke in English a bit too since Anna and Luz wanted to practice their English.

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Although paella is a typical Spanish dish, I hadn’t tried it before yesterday. It takes hours to make, and my host mom told me she only makes it for special occasion. After ordering two kinds, both of which were gone, I settled with vegetable paella. I actually wasn’t too impresses, I mean it was tasty, but it was pretty much just rice with some spices and vegetables. There are many different kinds of paella, but the most typical usually has some seafood mixed in. It’s actually from Valencia, and since I’m traveling there in a few weeks I’ll have to get it again and see how it compares.

I just love how all of the restaurants and cafes have outside seating here. No matter the time of day, or how cold it is, you will always see people sitting outside drinking a coffee, or enjoying some tapas.

After we had enjoyed our food, we walked along the river towards Plaza España and Parque María Luisa. The sun was shining and there were lots of people about. As we walked I talked to Luz about music, literature, school, and just life in general. Once we got to Plaza España we went to check out the Province Alcoves. I know I mentioned the plaza in one of my first blogs, and how each province had it’s own tiled alcove. We sat in the Granada one, since that’s where Luz and Ana are from. As we were talking, we noticed two brides come into the plaza in carriages. Ana told me it was a gypsy weeding.

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Everyone in the plaza started gravitating towards the wedding party. Although the brides had very lavish dresses, several people in the wedding party had even crazier outfits. One of the little girls started dancing and everyone in the bridal party formed a circle around her and started singing. As we were leaving the park we saw a pink hummer stretch limo with bows on the door handles. This is just a guess, but it might have belonged to the bridal party.

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After showing Luz some more famous spots in Sevilla we went into the Alfonso XIII hotel. I pass this hotel everyday on the way to school, and I have always wanted to go inside. It is absolutely stunning. We had tea in the main restaurant. We were going to sit in the lovely terrace area, but it was a bit too cold for that.

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After an excellent day together, we said are goodbye’s. However, I’m sure I will see them all again before I leave.

02/24/2013

Weekly Review

Since I haven’t really blogged at all about this past week, I decided to do a recap of some of the things I’ve been up to.

Clic: School was a bit rough this week since I changed classes, except I was moved to a lower level. This was extremely frustrating, especially since my teachers from the week before had promised me I would be moving up. I could barely stand to go to class; I couldn’t even hold a conversation with the people in my class. I talked to my teacher on Monday and she said it seemed I could move up if there was a class that had room for me. I also talked to the Spanish Director and she said I would have to take a test to move up. On Friday I took the test, which was ridiculously long, and I’m really hoping I change classes on Monday.

Guitar: I have started taking guitar lessons with Maddy. I have wanted to learn for a while, and I have the time now, so I figured, why not? We had our second class on Monday. Our teacher is really patient with us, since we are both terrible, and he is also very talented. It’s a bit confusing learning all of the vocab in Spanish, but I love playing. So far I can play, When September Ends, A Horse with No Name, and the intro to Banana Pancakes. I can’t wait till we get good enough to start learning some flamenco songs!

Reminders of Chile:  Although I like Spain, I really miss Chile and South America in general. I mean they are completely different, but there is just something special about South America. But I have discovered that wherever I go I can always find little reminders of the place I called home for four months. This week at volunteering I got to talking to a mother of one of the children and discovered that she had lived in Chile for several months. She has family there, and she also traveled around South America for a year.  We swapped stories for a while before she had to leave. My other encounter was with an actual Chilean. Maddy and I went to a crepe place after guitar practice and by accident Maddy paid with a Chilean peso. The cashier examined it, and told her it was a Chilean peso, and not a euro. I was very impressed that he knew what a Chilean peso looked like, but it turns out he is from Santiago. We chatted for a bit and even got a chance to practice are Chilean vocab. We told Hannah and Michelle, and they both got really excited so we all decided we have to go and visit him again.

Cooking Class: On Wednesday I attended a cooking class arranged by CIEE. It turned out it was in a man’s home. We were all a bit surprised by this, but we later discovered that the man is Nancy’s husband (our program director). We made Salmorejo, which is a cold soup and very typical of Andalusia, although not to be confused with gazpacho. And we also made arroz campesino, which is basically rice, with a bunch of spices and chicken, but you can basically put what you want in it. Although some of us helped chopped things, Nancy’s husband did most of the cooking. But everything was delicious. I really hope CIEE organizes another cooking class!

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A Spanish Farewell: On Thursday was my last afternoon class with the student teachers. I think I mentioned earlier how Clic was offering free classes in the afternoon and that they were taught by student teachers. On Wednesday we had are final project, which was a debate, and then on Thursday we went to a bar to chat about life. We had some great conversations. After about an hour and a half, some people had to leave, but the rest of us went to another bar for some more great conversations. All of the teachers were so nice, and they gave us all their emails and facebooks and told us if we eve needed anything to just ask.

Cata de Aceite: In Spanish, cata means a tasting. On Thursday evening I went to an olive oil tasting. It was the best 5 euros I’ve ever spent. There were about six different kinds of olive oil, five different kinds of pates, and three different kinds of jam, and there was even cheese. And we all got a free glass of wine and some olive oil to take home! Looking around the store I found some chocolate pates, so I think I’ll definitely be back, and since I’m a student at Clic I get a 10% discount.

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Becoming familiar with Flamenco: I mentioned in one of my previous blog visiting a flamenco bar called El Carbonería, well some of my friends and I revisited the bar and this time we were able to get seats. At first glance, Flamenco seems like a simple dance, but it is much more complicated then it looks. Although many women in Souther Spain know basic flamenco, which is called Sevillanas, very few know actual flamenco. During Fería de Abril everyone dances flamenco, so I’m hopefully going to start taking some Sevillanas classes soon so I can at least pretend to know what I’m doing at fería.

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Parlamento: Ok so this didn’t happen last week, but I thought it was worth mentioning. A few weeks ago we took a trip to the Parliament de Andalucía. What intrigued me the most about the visit was that the building used to be a hospital. The hospital was called Hospital de las Cinco Llagas (Hospital of the Five Holy Wounds). The parliament meetings are all held in the former cathedral of the hospital. The church is located in the center courtyard of the building, and still looks very much like a church on the outside. From the inside it has been completely transformed, except for one huge painting, which they didn’t feel was right to remove, so intead it is simply covreed by a screen during meetings.

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Rain rain, go away: Whoever said the rain in Spain falls mostly on the plane was dead wrong. It has rained everyday this past week. On Friday we had a hiking trip schedule with CIEE, but it was cancelled because of the weather. I really hope it gets rescheduled.

02/22/2013

A Cavern on the Cove

Sunday we weren’t given the luxury of sleeping in since we needed to take a bus to Porto Cristo, which is located on the other side of the island from where we were staying. We took a bus from Arenal to Plaza España, but we didn’t realize the second bus we had to take was underground and we almost missed it.

We arrived just in time and an hour and a half later we arrived at Cuevas del Drac. Mallorca has many different caves, but these were the most accessible to us since there was a bus that left right from Palma. The tour of the caves was given in Spanish, English, and German. I was impressed that the tour guide could speak so many languages, although his accent was a little strong so I understood the Spanish much better than the English.

The cave is actually four caves, called Black Cave, White Cave, Cave of Luis Salvador, and Cave of the French, all of which are connected to each other. The caves formed by water being forced through the entrance from the Mediterranean Sea. The caves have an underground lake called Martel Lake. Toward the end for the tour there was even a classical music concert. There were many benches to sit on and they turned off all of the lights, several boats came around the corner with lights on them and the concert began. It was really cool, especially with the lighting. After the concert we were able to take a short boat ride across the lake to the exit of the cave. It reminded me a lot of the Blue Grotto in Italy.

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Since we had time to kill before our bus back, we explored the harbor of Porto Cristo.  It was such a cute little town, and the view from the harbor was so beautiful. We ate some lunch after a bit of exploring and by then the bus had arrived.

 

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After we got back to Palma we took a bus to the Castillo de Bellver. There was a great view of the whole city. After admiring the view and the architecture we started walking towards the center of the city. We tried to find flowers to give to Sonia to thank her, but since it was Sunday evening, everything was closed. After a fruitless search we took a bus back to Arenal. We were lucky enough to find one store that was open for 24 hours so we were able to buy some wine for Sonia.

After we got back to the house, we packed up, had a last cup of tea and then Sonia drove us to the airport. This was my first experience flying with Ryanair. I was a bit nervous, but it went pretty well. Except that they took my shampoo on the way home. I was actually really annoyed at this since it was fine when I was going there, but not going home.

We arrived in Sevilla without a problem and were able to take the last bus back to the city. After getting home around 2am I gladly feel into bed.

02/21/2013

Exploring Palma

On Saturday we were able to sleep in a bit, and I was even able to go for a nice run. I found this great little park that had a bunch of trails. It was so great. Although running next to the river Guadalquivir is nice, I miss being able to run surrounded by nature. It was so peaceful and relaxing, it was just such a great way to start my day. As I was running back I found this beautiful lookout and if it had been warmer I probably would have jumped into the water. It just looked so clear and inviting.

After breakfast we caught a bus to Palma and headed to the Cathedral. It is the second largest cathedral in Spain, after the cathedral in Sevilla, and it was truly beautiful inside. It was built in a Gothic style and like many of the churches in Sevilla, it was build on the site of a pre-existing mosque. My favorite part of the cathedral was the vault of the blessed sacrament.

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As you can see it is a very beautiful piece of artwork, and I have never seen anything like it in a church. It was inspired by the miracle of the loaves and fishes and it is meant to represent the Eucharist. After that we found our way to the Arab baths. Only a small part of them is left, but it was still really cool to see. After that we headed to a museum dedicated entirely to Salvador Dalí. I studied him a bit in Spanish 4, but many of the pieces in this museum were much less well known. The museum was located in an old house and it was very beautiful.

We then decided to get some lunch. We found this little café that had a great view of the ocean. We got some delicious pizza. I know, it’s not very Spanish, but the only pizza I’ve had here so far is frozen pizza, and it isn’t very good. And of course I got some chocolate cake, which was delicious.

After eating we successfully found the market we had tried to find yesterday. It took us much less time since we were pretty much already familiar with the center of the city. There were a bunch of stands selling artisanal cheeses and olive oil. There were also a good number of stands selling flowers. We even saw one stand selling GIANT yummy candies. And when I say giant, I mean giant. There was even a stand that sold Moroccan tea, and we were able to keep the tea cup it was served in. I’m honestly so excited for my visit to Morocco.

After checking out the market we headed back to the cathedral for mass. There were a bunch of lights all around the church, it reminded me of Christmas. We went shopping for a bit after mass, and of course I bought some chocolate. For dinner, we decided to get some cheese and bread. We went back to the market, but unfortunately it was closed, so we decided to look for a grocery store. After asking several people, we found the grocery store. One of the woman who had given us directions, told us it closed at 9:30, however, when we were still there at 9:20 we were getting yelled at to leave. After hurriedly buying bread, cheese, and some oranges we headed to the bus stop. Dinner proved to be truly delicious. The oranges really made the meal. I normally don’t even like oranges, but they are so sweet and delicious here, I eat about two a day.

A Traveler and Not Just Another Tourist

On Friday morning we woke up to mint tea awaiting us in the kitchen. We ate breakfast with Maria and Sonia.  Maria is from Bilbao as well and is another teacher at the school. We had a great conversation over breakfast. It seems both of them have traveled so much and have so many interesting stories from all they have seen and done. We talked a lot about the difference between just being a tourist and traveling. I hope that wherever I may go in my life, I remain a traveler and actually learn about the community and people I am visiting. That is why it is so great to be able to speak another language. Even though many people in the world speak English, that’s no excuse for not learning another language. We really miss out on so much when we can’t communicate with the people. For example, Maria was telling us about her time she spent in Australia and how everyone she encountered there was so open and friendly and how she had come across a Spaniard who had traveled to Australia as well. She was so eager to talk to him about it, since she had loved it os much. Yet this man was not nearly as enthusiastic about his visit as Maria was. The reason being was because he could not speak English. He had simply gone and seen everything, but didn’t experience anything, which is what traveling is all about. It’s about the people we meet and the experiences we have because of them.

            After breakast I got to sit in on a class with a Russian girl named Maria.  Since Russian is a complicated language, it is not too hard for Russians to learn Spanish. Maria recently married a man from Mallorca. Although she never imagined living anywhere except Russia, because she loves it so much, it was impossible for her husband to obtain a Russian visa, since he would need to stay in Russia for six months, and is unable to because of his job. I have never had any interactions with  people from Russia before, but I really enjoyed talking to Maria.  Sonia  later informed me that all of the Russian students they have had are always so eager to not only learn the language, but also learn about the Spanish culture, and share their own as well.

            The way that Sonia taught Maria seemed very practical. She forced her to speak by asking her questions and commenting about things she would say. She would correct her is she made a mistake, but never too harshly, and then she always allowed Maria to keep going. That’s probably how languages should be taught, except were always so focused on simply memorizing verb tenses that we forget to actually practice for real life situations. Of course, there are so many things that simply cannot be taught in a classroom, you just have to live them.

            After the class was finished we all sat on one of the terraces and drank tea while admiring the beautiful surroundings.  The trees were all still in bloom, and it smelled os fresh and lovely. The house itself  is very beautiful as well. It was owned by a large family, but when the parenst passed away, the children decided to rent it out. They really liked the idea of the language school and the house has been home to the program ever since.

            After we finished with our tea, we were given a tour of the house. As lovely as it was in February, I can’t imagine how wonderful it is in the warmer months. There is a pool out back, and many times they have barbecues in the summer. There is even a brick oven where they often roast pigs, although I’m not sure how I feel about that.

            After seeing the house, Sonia and Maria  took us for a little walk around the town. It is called Arenal and it is super cute.  It was so calm and relaxed, it reminded me of Sea isle in the winter. One of the things I noticed right away, even when we were at the airport, was that none of the signs I saw were in Spanish. They were all written in Mallorquin, which is a form of Catalan. Many signs were actually written in English, Spanish, and Mallorquin, although every street name and bus stop was simply in Mallorquin.

            Maria and Sonia showed us  el Club Náutico. There were so many beautiful sailboats. I really wanted to go on one. Apparently kiteboarding  is very big in Mallorca as well, but more in the North of the island, where it is windier.

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            After touring Arenal, Sonia and Maria made us a fantastic lunch. Fish(my first time eating fish that hasn’t been fried since I’ve been in Spain!) with some delicious veggies, and whole grain bread and cheese, wine, and greek yougurt with honey for dessert. After all of that we were given more tea and some cookies as well. It was a delicious meal and once again we had some great conversations about traveling and life and I was able to practice my Spanish some more, since I usually don’t have too many chances to speak so much Spanish.

            After eating we took a nice siesta. I have been so busy in Spain I haven’t had much time for siestas, so it was nice to actually practice this custom for once.

            After taking a refhresing nap, I read for a while and researched some places we could go in Mallorca. We found some pretty cool stuff, such as kayaking and cliff diving, but you can really only do those it it’s warmer. But we found some really cool caves we could explore and some other cool sites as well.

             We took the bus into Palma. The bus system there was great. It was super easy to use and fairly cheap. While we were riding the bus to the center of town we saw a street market. After admiring the outside of the cathedral for a bit(it was closed when we arrived) we decided to try and find the market we had seen. We ended up walking around for hours, and eventually gave up. The next day we realized we walked in a bunch of circles for hours.

            We worked up quit an appetite from so much walking, so we attempted  to find some food. Unfortunately, since it’s winter, everything closed early.  After looking at several, and even sitting at one restaurant, we found a place and got som tapas. They weren’t the best, but when your hungry, the quality isn’t too important.

 

02/20/2013

Island Getaway

This past weekend I had the sensation of no longer being in Spain. I traveled to the island of Mallorca and had a truly wonderful weekend.

I went with a girl from my hometown who is currently studying in Sevilla. She had interned with a language camp this past summer, which, lucky for us, has a partner program in Mallorca.

The language program is super interesting. It is a language immersion program. All of hte students live together in a house, which is where all of the lessons are held. Breakfast and lunch are always eaten together, so students are constantly forced to speak Spanish. Since it is winter, they currently  have very few students.   Mallorca is a very popular place during the summer, but we were able to sit in on one class with a Russian girl named Maria.

I was very surprised to hear that many of the people who have come to Baraka(the name of the language school) are Russian. So far no Americans have come, but it has only been open for a year.

When we arrived, Sonia, one of the teachers at the school, was there to greet us at the airport. I was a bit discouraged to find it wasn’t any warmer than Sevilla when i stepped outside. In fact, it may have even been a bit colder. It was very damp since we were right near the ocean, it actually reminded me of Viña a bit in that sense.

It was dark when we arrived, so it was very hard to see where we were. As soon as we arrived at the house, Sonia put on some water to make tea and began cooking dinner for us. We had rice with some vegetables and whole wheat break and cheese. I was very excited to have whole wheat bread since I normally eat white break everyday with my host family. The meal was delicious, and talking to Sonia was super interesting. She is actually from Bilbao, in el País Vasco.

We were pretty tired from our flight over, even though it had only lasted about an hour and a half, traveling always makes me feel a bit drained. We went to bed some after eating, and I was really happy to get to bed before midnight for once.

I’m working on posting the rest of the weekend soon, but all in all it was a very relaxing and enjoyable weekend. I had such a crazy week, it was nice to have some down time.

If your interested in learning more about the language school,here is a link to the    webpage.

http://www.barakalearn.com/Learn_Spanish_in_Mallorca/Home.html

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Here is a map of Spain with Las Islas Baleares. Mallorca is the largest one located in the center. Menorca is a bit north of Mallorca and Ibiza is the one below Mallorca.

 

02/16/2013

Clase

Me gustas tu - music

Hello, everyone. Although I haven't made an official blog post in quite awhile, I figured I'd take the time to talk about an important subject for us- school.

Ain't nobody fresher than my Clic.. (sorry I had to)

The other gap students and I all go to school at CLIC. It's a language school specifically, and they have many different levels of classes and activities to do to help you with your spanish. For example, you can do an intercambio, or meet with a native sevillano, and talk to them in english for an hour and then Spanish. I did this two days ago, and had a blast with my intercambio. His name is Javier and his first question for me was - "how do you use "dude" in a sentence?!" Intercambios are great for meeting native speakers and bettering your Spanish, so luckily for us, Clic does a terrific job of arranging the intercambios.

    Additionally, there are what my professor refers to as "speed-dates," basically just weekly meetings with a jumble of nationalities, German, English, American, Japanese, Korean, Australian, etc. where everyone tries to meet as many people as they can.. I haven't been yet but they sound awesome. Speaking of greatness, I've been really impressed by our classes at Clic.
We start class at 9:15, have just enough time during break to run and grab sandwiches from Sur, and then second class starts at 12 and we get out at 1, so not too bad if you ask me! Although my classes in Chile were interesting and challenging in terms of my vocab and general understanding of literature, my classes here are definitely better for improving my grammar and the technicalities of Spanish. My teacher, Adrian, is an extremely patient teacher, and I love it when we break from grammar to study songs. He's the only teacher I've ever had who's called me by my full name, however, but perhaps it's better because many people here call me Mary on accident instead of Maddy- so I'm okay using Madeleine for class! He's a salsa dancer, and always puts on the best background music when we're working in class, but I especially like it when we learn from songs- everything from Shakira to Manu Chao to Silvio Rodriguez. I've put the link up above from an 8 tracks mix you guys mightlike... many of which we've listened to in class. 

-M

 

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Maya and I during a class fieldtrip

 

 

 

02/12/2013

Virgen del Rocío

So this afternoon I had my first volunteer experience in Spain.

I had expected the volunteering that I would do in Spain would be much different from Chile, and I was certainly right about that. Today I went with one of the other gap students to one of the hospitals in Sevilla. The hospital is called Virgen del Rocío, and as my host mom informed me it is one of the best  hospitals in southern Spain, and for that matter, all of Spain. In addition, my host siblings were also born there. 

For most of the time all of us volunteers were in a room called the cyber aula. It has lots of computers, toys, crayons, and it even has a play station. The kids who are currently in the hospital can come and color or play a video game, or interact with some of the other children.

Several of the kids are their because they have had surgery, others are there for other reasons. I actually wasn’t in the room the whole time since I went around with some of the other volunteers to rooms where the kids were not able to come upstairs and we brought them paper and crayons. That part was rather sad. But for most of it I was simply making sure everyone had the right color of paint and the right picture to paint.

In Chile whenever I volunteered, the other people who volunteered with me were always Americans and they usually went to the same school as me, or were in the same program. I was very surprised by the number of Spanish volunteers that were present.

I felt like it was a lot more like volunteering somewhere in the U.S. I didn’t really do too much, but every little bit counts.

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here is a picture of part of the hospital, it's actually not the part that I was in, since the hospital is huge, but it gives you a little bit of an idea of where I will be spending my Tuesday evenings

 

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