Chemistry major, Spanish minor
Universidad de Burgos, Spain
Alright, I’m two weeks into my study abroad experience here in Burgos, Spain. I have had to learn many things so quickly in order to keep up. The language is faster than I assumed it would be and let’s not even get into how fast they can walk! Not to worry, I can understand and communicate much better now, and the blisters on my feet have finally healed.
The day I first arrived was a whirlwind; meeting up with classmates I’d only met a few times before in an airport that is insanely confusing for an inexperienced traveler such as myself. Well, I finally found my group after only half an hour of wandering with my heavy luggage in the crowded airport and left Madrid on a bus destined for my future home, Burgos. After a 3 hour long journey, I saw the beautiful Catedral de Burgos in the distance and just knew I was meant to be there. This place is what I had been dreaming of for months, years even. All the fears and insecurities I’d had before that moment seemed to drift away and I knew everything was going to be alright.
We were then led off the bus to a crowd of people that would be welcoming us into their homes for the duration of the semester. To my surprise, I was not greeted by my host mother, but a friend of hers. She gathered all my things and told me (very quickly, I might add) that I would meet my host mom later that day, that she was at work. At least I’m pretty sure that’s what she said. That’s how it happened, anyway. After several hours spent on a couch watching TV (in Spanish!!), I was able to go to my new home with my host mom. She was very understanding of the fact that I was so incredibly tired at that point, that my brain was still thinking in English, that I was insanely overwhelmed.
After a wonderfully long siesta, we went on an adventure around Burgos. She showed me all of her favorite places to go and eat and shop and I was able to see the beautiful and iconic sites of the city. We met a few more of her friends and ran into many of my classmates that just so happened to be getting the same tour. I was surprised to learn that I could still hold a decent conversation, despite my exhaustion. I could understand almost everything that my host mom and the other host families were saying, however, that may be due to the fact that they had switched over to a more basic Spanish than what they are used to speaking.
It has gradually become easier to understand even the more complex Spanish in the last two weeks, and I am still learning the ins and outs of this beautiful and historic city. A lot has happened in my time here already, and I’m so much more than excited to continue learning and experiencing new things as my time here goes on.