Country sides covered in castles, gelato and churros before an afternoon siesta, and cheering for Madrid’s prized soccer team sounds like a dream, but for me it was a wonderful reality. A summer in Spain can be a little surreal, living in the historically rich culture and adapting to a whole new way of life. With only one month to experience as much culture as possible, every moment has to be appreciated. In a country that wakes up at 9:30, spends 3 hours eating a meal, shuts down the city for siesta, and sees no reason to rush any conversation, it was difficult to balance adjusting to the leisurely pace while fitting as much as you can into one day. When your schedule is jam-packed with various historic and exotic cities, sights, and experiences, the country becomes the classroom. Even with a faculty structured trip there was so much freedom; freedom to try new things, meet new people, and make your own memories. A foreign city is filled with foreign customs and ideas that can seem intimidating, yet introduce the most thrilling adventures. Communicating with people from around the world reveals how we are all so different and similar at the same time. Language can be practiced in any nation, history can be studied from any book, and foods can be cooked in any kitchen, but these things can only be truly appreciated in their original country. In Spain there was nothing better than understanding the locals and eating the unique meals that they have prepared for centuries. Even the modern city of Madrid was filled with history on every street. Things so simple to a native can bring so much joy to a traveler. I believe every city and every country has an adventure. There is so much to learn, why not do it in another country?

Hasta Luego,