¡Hola a todos! (Hello to all…) This past week was absolute nonstop, so I finally have a minute to sit down and write an entry. Let´s start with last Tuesday. Professor LaPlatney, one of the directors for the study abroad programs came to visit us in A Coruña and took us out for dinner. She filled us in on the latest happenings on the hill and any changes in the study abroad program. We then explained all the ups and downs of the year, and the love we have for our gorgeous city by the sea! It was so nice to see a familiar face from Holy Cross, and we all had a great time reminiscing about our adventures from earlier this year, yet schocked that it is nearly over.
On Friday 5 of us Crusaders in A Coruña travelled to Madrid to sightsee and attend a concert. We arrived at the airport on Friday morning and hopped on the metro heading towards the city center. Once we were all settled in the apartment (we stayed at James´s host family´s apartment) we ventured out into the city. After eating a complete lunch, we started walking all over Madrid. We saw the old royal palace (the royal family doesn´t actually live there anymore), several churches, plazas and wondered down the winding and narrow streets. The next day, Kelsey, myself and Alexandra (who is studying in York, England) decided to tour around Madrid as we hadn´t really explored it earlier this year However, James, Elena and Kristen decided to take a day trip to Segovia, Spain as they had already visited Madrid earlier this year. We woke up early and headed out for the free walking tour. The tour lasted about 3 hours, and took us ALL over Madrid and was of course complimented with detailed descriptions and history about every building. They have these free walking tours all over Europe, and I highly recommend that any budget traveller (or non budget traveller) takes advantage of this opportunity! The tours are in English and the guides are usually young students, who request a tip at the end. It’s a pretty sweet deal!
After the tour, we countined to walk around Madrid and finally came across a huge park, where we laid down our tired bodies and tanned/napped for about 45 minutes. Next, Kristen and Elena returned from Segovia and we headed towards Plaza de Deportes to watch a…don´t judge….Taylor Swift concert…guilty pleasure…ok?! It was quite fun and since she isn´t as popular in Spain, we were actually able to stand quite close to the stage. I almost touched her at one moment! (insert gasp) At the concert, we coincidentally ran into Kendra, another crusader who is studying in Palma, Spain for the year! We hadn´t seen her since Pamplona so it wonderful to quickly catch up on the past year.The whole weekend we had fantastic sunny and warm weather which we carried on the plane with us back to La Coruña! So as the east coast is celebrating their first day of spring with a snowfall, I am going to go run near the ocean with…a t-shirt and shorts!!
Dato Divertido: The Spaniards have several ways of saying goodbye. Whenever I am walking on the street and hear someone on the phone. The goodbye is very complex and long…I just think that they just don´t want to hang up. Here are the goodbyes I have heard this year….sometimes they only use one and other times you can hear them all! venga, ciao, adios, un beso, un abrazo, hasta mañana, hasta pronto, hasta próximo, hasta entonces, hasta luego…So a little hint…if you want to sound Spanish on the phone…just say all of these really quickly! You can fool anyone!