Days are passing by too fast for me to sit back, take a breath, and think.
Uno. Barcelona is an entirely different city when the sun is shining. It is a much lovelier, livelier city and I’m starting to love it as days pass. Went to the beach this past weekend and just soaked in the brilliant sun. It was absolutely fantastic.
Being here makes me think about where I want to live after I graduate. A few days ago, I ran along the beach with my church friends, Clarissa and Yolanda, and was so happy, grateful, and dying (from lack of exercise) at the same time because I realized how lucky I am just to be able to get up and decide, ¨Hey I´m going to go for a walk along the beach.¨ No way can I do that back home (Jones beach definitely lacks the charm of the beaches here) and it is even worse when in Boston. I love how Barcelona has everything-the bustling city life combined with the relaxing take-your-time mentality of an island region.
But at the same time, I don´t think I could ever really live here. I miss my family too much, my culture, Korean food!, and there are many large differences here I could never allow me to fully adjust here for me to consider it home.
Dos. Romance disgusts me. I love romance. That disgusts me.
This past Friday was Sant Jordi´s Day (or Barcelona´s St. Valentine´s Day) On this day, a guy gives a girl a rose; in exchange, a guy receives a book from the girl. Why? There’s no answer, according to my Catalan friends, it is a mere tradition. But I walked with my new found Catalan friends along Las Ramblas and Passeig de Gracia to find stands of roses being sold everywhere in all kinds of colors-red, yellow, blue, even rainbow. What I didn´t understand was all the vendors who kept coming up to ME. So I kept asking if it was for free and they just laughed at me as if I was crazy. Psh, Why the hell would I buy myself my own rose?? Estupidos.
Tres. My Spanish needs improvement.
Last week I met my language exchange partner. Her name is Alejandra and she´s Peruvian but moved to Barcelona when she was six. She´s great and an absolute sweetheart. She invited me to eat with her friends ,who she referred to as the UN haha. Most of her friends are international and from everywhere-Poland, Hong Kong, some others from Peru, etc. etc. I love how open-minded she is and we get along so well! All of them were speaking in Spànish and this was the first time I found myself actually having a real conversation in Spanish. They were so warm, welcoming, and just a bundle of joy.
Okay, I´m digressing. So yeah, we were all speaking in Spanish through lunchtime and I found myself stumbling and at a lack of words because I SUCK AT SPANISH. Of course I can get around and talk with people, but it´s different when you´re having a casual, normal, friendly conversation. I found myself unable to translate jokes or colloquial sayings that I would be able to say in English…so that´s the challenging part. That needs to improve and change ASAP.
Cuatro. I only have two months left in Barcelona. Where did the time go?!?
I still have some travels coming up (Dublin this weekend, Prague and Budapest next weekend!) But I feel like I should´ve explored all of Spain while here. I mean, I´m here to learn Spanish right? I should try to utilize it as much as I can!
Cinco. What do you say to taking chances?
I can’t wait until Korea. This is self-explanatory.
Siete. My modern art professor basically told me I was going to fail because of my less-than-impressive Spanish. That’s comforting.
My modern art class is not a bullshit class. In fact, everyone is a serious art student and I am so intimidated by all the intelligent thinkers in my class. Everyone discusses their opinions and abstract thoughts in class and I just sit there thinking ¨Uhhhh….¨ And when I look around in class everyone is furiously taking notes and wow, I don´t think I´ve ever felt so intimidated in class!
My professor has such a presence. She´s quite old, but still is guapisima. She reminds me of Meryl Streep in Devil Wears Prada actually haha She´s intimidating in the way she is so posh, poised, and so intellectual…
So I went up to her after the first day of class, explaining that I was a new student and explaining that I was an international student so I was apologizing that I would not be saying much in class because my Spanish is not quite good.
This was a tidbit of our conversation:
¨Qué estudias?¨ What do you study?
I study business
*makes face* ¨…y que haces aqui?¨ Then what are you doing here?
Well, even though I´m a business major, I still love art and because I am not offered art courses in my business school back home, I wanted to take them here.
¨Pero tu estudias negocios y los estudiantes aquí son estudiantes que tenían muchos años de estudias de arte.¨ But you study business…? And the students here are students that have had many years of experience of art.
Erm…Yes, but I may not be as knowledgeable as the others but I am willing to learn and try because I really have a passion for the arts.
¨Si pero la nivel de español es más alto de tú, sabes? But the level of Spanish here is high for you, you know that?
Uh…yes I´m aware, but I´m willing to try?
Yeah, so imagine Meryl Streep´s Devil Wears Prada character and insert that image as my professor….Can you say intimidating?!
Ocho. …Hence, refer to numero Tres.
Nueve. I love my language exchange partner.
She is such a bubbly, lively, fun, open-minded girl. She is OBSESSED with Japanese things, Japanese people, Japanese in general haha What I also found really interesting was the fact that she is Mormon! I never thought i would meet a Mormon Spaniard? She takes her religion very seriously and I admire that. She understands that my Spanish is poop, but she is so patient with me when I try to explain something. And even if I try to make a joke but it comes out so stupid in Spanish, she laughs along and it makes me feel less awkward and more comfortable to speak Spanish. Ah, she´s great!
Diez. I really need to update my blog with a more thorough post and elaborate in more depth…
It’ll happen soon…-er or later….