Friday, January 30, 2009


So we woke up at 7 am this morning to walk to the meeting place to leave for Granada and I am now exausted. Granada is a few hours away from Sevilla on bus and is actually in between two mountain ranges. Driving up to the city you could see snow covered mountains all around, it's too bad we don't have time to ski. Granada is a pretty big city, bigger than I was expecting, kind of like Sevilla, but it had a much larger arab influence. Most of the stores on the sides of the streets have stores with cheap arab looking clothing and sourveniers. It is interesting to see the small differences in the different cities across southern Spain.
I am going to take a siesta now but I will update more on Granada soon and hopefully will post some pictures to!

Thursday, January 29, 2009


Only a few but I will keep adding more!
Just click on the picture and it should take you to my photobucket!
I'm not sure how they are organized yet so it may be a few days before I figure it out...

Classes y Viajes...

Monday I started classes with a schedule that was not exactly (more like not at all) what I had signed up for. Luckily, after visiting a few classes and completely dropping a few I think I almost have a schedule! I am taking an international marketing class in english with a professor who has traveled all over and just seems to be a really interesting energetic person. I will probably also be taking international buisness with him because the class I really wanted to take on programs to fight poverty in the EU is really advanced spanish and when I went today I did not understand very much at all. Other than that I am still trying to get into a spanish conversation class which is really exciting and will help me a lot, and I am taking a spanish civilization and culture class which is english for now but I may try to switch to spanish! However, classes are by far the most boring thing here sooo.. moving on to more exicting things!
There is a program in Sevilla that is specifically for study abroad students who want to travel so we went there yesterday and are going to sign up for a 6 day trip to Morocco which includes visiting big cities and a camel ride into the desert where we sleep in an oasis! We are also going to Gibralter for a day and playing with monkeys! We are all really excited about the trips, and in addition to those we still have trips that came with our program. Tommorrow we head to Granada for the weekend. I'll have to let you know when I get back what is there because I have no idea right now.
Pictures are coming soon and hopefully some more updates!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


I have spent the past few days catching up on sleep and exploring the city of Sevilla. Yesterday we got to tour the school we will be attending, which is actually right outside of the city so we have about a 30 min bus ride to the campus. The school is relatively new and pretty small but growing every year they said.
After the tour of the campus we came back to the city and got to tour the famous cathedral that is in Sevilla. It is the largest gothic cathedral in the world and the third largest cathedral. I have to admit I wasn’t extremely excited about seeing another cathedral but it was pretty impressive and getting to climb the bell tower had some great views of the city. The tower is actually one of the only ones built that doesn’t have stairs going up. Instead it has ramps and people used to right horses up. Unfortunately there are no horses to ride anymore so we had to walk up what started as some really steep inclines, but they got less steep as they got to the top because the horses would get tired.
Today we woke up early and toured the Royal Palace and Gardens which were really amazing. I have a ton of pictures so hopefully they will be up soon!
I think I have forgot to mention in my earlier posts but there are orange trees literally all of Sevilla and today I learned that there 30,000 in total and that they are going to pick them all soon for marmalade! It will be sad to see them all go!
Although I am still getting used to the culture and the food things I am starting to adapt and hopefully soon my Spanish skills will follow! I am hoping to be able to put a link to my pictures and some of my friends pictures soon because I don’t have a fast enough connection to actually upload pictures to this blog.

Saturday, January 24, 2009


I have been in Sevilla now for a few days and have met my host family who is a 56 year old lady who lives by herself. The good news is that I am in the Santa Cruz barrio which is one of the nicest neighborhoods in Sevilla. The bad news is that my mother does not speak any english and she talks really fast. This probably won't be a problem in the future but for now it is kind of inconvenient, especially when it comes to meals. So far the food has been the biggest problem. We really haven't had anything that obscure but she somehow manages to make even the most mundane meals into something that we have to force ourselves to eat. Even salad has so much salt on it that I can barely finish. The other problem is that she thinks we are too skinny so she gives us enormous portions and then thinks we don't like it when we don't finish. Other than that though everything is going well. Yesterday we took a bike tour of the city which was nice. Sevilla is actually pretty big, bigger than I expected at least.
Today we walked around our neighborhood and bought some hangers and I bought some cherries that I found that looked really good but of course were really expensive. Later I think we are going to do a little shopping at the big shopping area in town and then hopefully we can find something very Spanish to do tonight.
I will try to upload some pictures but the connection here is not very strong so I am not sure if I will be able. Hopefully I will create an album on another site soon and can put a link on here.

Oh I forgot.. for my cultural observation today we saw a vending machine on the street today that had cans of beer in it. Muy interesante.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Moving on..

Today was our last day in Madrid and tommorrow we head to Sevilla! We did get to visit El Escorial today which was interesting but it was cold and windy so I really just wanted to come home and curl up in bed. I am really excited about going to Sevilla tommorrow and meeting my host mother! I'll let you know how it goes. I am not sure if I will have internet at my house in Sevilla so I may not be able to post as often but I will try and I should have some pictures up soon!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Adventures in Madrid...

Today was a pretty laid back day without many planned activities, which was nice. We went to the Prado museum in the morning which was interesting but way to big to completely enjoy everything.
After the museum we came back to the hotel for my personal favorite part of the Spanish culture so far, siestas. I am definately going to have to bring this tradition back to the states with me and strictly enforce it in my apartment.
After a lovely siesta my roommates and I watched the inauguration and then went for a walk around town, attempting to speak in Spanish which was probably extremely amusing to anyone who overheard. I also attempted to go to a pharmacy and get some medicine for a sinus problem I'm having which was an adventure in itself. Suprisingly I could read many of the labels and some of the medicines were similar to things in the US so I would recognize them by their packaging or labels.
The highlight of the day today was definately dinner which was a HUGE improvement over the eleven course meal we had last night, all of which were less than appetizing. However, tonight we went to a Spanish pub looking place and I had ostrich for the first time which was suprisingly delicious! Hopefully the food situation will continue to improve! More to come soon...

Monday, January 19, 2009

The arrival...

I’m in Spain! After two flights, one to Philadelphia and then another to Madrid, I am officially in Spain. So far everything has been a breeze, although I have not gotten much accomplished since my arrival. My plane got in about thirty minutes late at 11am Spanish time and about 5am US time. Luckily I was able to sleep almost the entire time on both flights. When we got to the airport I found both of my bags (yay!) and then went with the other students in my program that I had met on my flight and found our leaders. We only waited about 20 minutes for a few other students and then we all went out to our bus that took us through Madrid and to our hotel where my roommates and I have been sleeping ever since. I have only had one mishap so far and that was leaving my backpack on the bus but it turned out to not be a big deal because our leaders were taking that same bus back to the airport to get another group.
We have a group meeting tonight and then take a short walk before dinner! More updates soon…