Category: Las Grutas Maravillosas

Beginnings and endings

Whew, what a week! I’m super glad it’s over. This has without a doubt been the most hectic few days I’ve had since I’ve been here – hence my long silence on blog updates :). But I think things are finally calming down again, so I should be able to give you more frequent updates and pictures (on that note, it has come to my attention that the link to the pictures in Españoles por fin was broken. I have now fixed that).

Anyway, I suppose first I should update you on my classes, since that is, after all, why I’m here. Last week I had finals (hence part of the reason for the insanity). There are 2 rounds of classes here: one lasts only 3 weeks, and the other lasts until the end of the semester. So last week I finished up my first term. I feel like it went well. My lowest grade up until that point was a 95, and I was the first one done with the test :). I’m sad it only lasted 3 weeks, though…I really liked the teacher. I also got my schedule for my future classes…and it’s INSANE! I hate it :(. But I’m going to talk to the director and try to change some classes around on Monday, so I’ll let you know my final schedule in my next update. I do believe, however, that I will have ALOT more free time, so hopefully you’ll be hearing from me more often (be that in blogs, chat, or skype :]).

So, in other homework news: I opened my next letter from Jon last week. So here are my new assignments: 1) Take a dance class as part of the tour at the Museum of Flamenco Dance, 2) Take your new dance moves and dance in one of the fountains at Alameda de Hercules, 3) Find the ruins beneath the Plaza de Pescanderia, 4) Take a picture of something that makes you extremely happy, and post it on Facebook (check out my picture here. And, before people start teasing me about having a Spanish boyfriend, it´s not him specifically that makes me so happy, but just all of my Spanish friends in general :P. That´s just the only picture I have so far), 5) Sing your siblings a song over Skype webcam, and 6) If your wardrobe allows it, wear Spain’s colors one day. Interesting thing there, although Spain’s colors are red and yellow, yellow is considered bad luck. People rarely wear it, and performers never, EVER wear it. I find it ironic that the national color is considered bad luck… My wardrobe at the moment does not allow it, but I’ll see if I can fix that before I leave :). With less classes and not having to worry about my applications (I finally got them submitted, woohoo!!!!), I should have a lot more time to get my bucket list done. I’m super excited about it, especially since I’ve started meeting people that I would want to share my experiences with.

On that note, I went out Saturday night with Sarah and some intercambios, Miguel and Eligio. I had sooo much fun. Also, I’m such a nerd :D. We did go out late, which is normal in Spain…but what we did was not normal. We went to an arcade room that’s in the big mall in Seville (Nervion Plaza), and played arcade games all night. May I just say that I dominated at air hockey :D. Afterwards, we went to a bar that was owned by a friend of theirs, and bought drinks and just sat around and talked. I got a tea that’s very similar to a peach tea from Costa Rica, so I was happy. We talked about anything and everything, and laughed at each other’s language mistakes, and in general just had a grand time. I didn’t get back to the house until after 2:00, however, which made the next day rather hard to stay awake. There’s a reason I don’t stay out that late on school nights…the next day I’m totally shot :).
But anyway, let me tell you about the next day!! Sarah had told me about an evangelical church she went to last week when I went on the hiking trip, and so this morning I went with her to church. It was amazingggggg. (although I don’t ever want to hear you guys complaining that your hour and a half long services ran long…this church meets from 11:30 – 2:30 :P) The worship was awesome, and the sermon excellent (especially since I understood all of it! Yes, it’s all in Spanish), and I got to meet some awesome people, too. I’m pretty psyched about going back. They’re starting a Bible study on Thursday nights that I want to get involved in…right now I have a class at the same time, but hopefully I’ll be able to change it.

So after church I came home and ate lunch with my family, and then promptly passed out. I felt better after a nap, which is good, cuz I went out again with the same group from last night. We walked around the city for a while – didn’t really do anything, but it was fun, nevertheless. I’m so excited about Jon’s bucket list, though – I plan on showing these natives Sevillanos their city. Many of the things he’s having me do, they have never done before. So we’ll get to experience them together. I suppose it’s the same way in the USA – if you grow up around something, you’re less likely to appreciate its uniqueness. The people least likely to have been to the Grand Canyon always seem to be the ones that live within a hour of it :).

Oh also, I forgot to mention that on Saturday I went to Aracena to see “Las Grutas Maravillosas” (the amazing caves). They truly were amazing. They didn’t let us take any pictures, which was quite tragic, but at least I have the memory of them. I love caves :D. Aracena is famous for it’s “jamón ibérica”, so I also went to a pig museum while there (yes, it really does exist), and tried some of the famous ham. It was good, but very very salty – the way they make it is smother it in salt and leave it to air-cure. Check out pictures here. After the museum, I went up to the top of the mountain to see the castle and church that was nestled in the top (which, of course, involved more climbing. If I don’t come back completely cured of my fear of heights, it certainly won’t be for lack of trying :]).
So this weekend was quite excellent, overall. Probably the best I’ve had since I’ve been here. An ironically fitting ending to what was definitely the worst week so far. But everything has it’s season, and I’m quite glad that the season of stress was short.