Wow, what a semester I’ve had!
Looking back at how much I’ve done in three and a half months really is crazy.
Thanks to Granada´s position in the south of Spain (a 50-minute drive in one direction to the beach and 45 minutes in the other to the snowy mountains) I’ve visited Málaga, Salobreña, Almuñecar, Nerja, Sevilla and Sierra Nevada. I´ve also done plenty of exploring around Granada itself, sampling a tapa or two along the way.
I´ve gotten really close to some new Spanish friends which is doing wonders for my language (and my social life of course!) Having said that, believe it or not, the year abroad isn’t all about partying (although for many of us it plays a part) because I’ve still got to make sure that I keep up with the demands of studying at a Spanish University.
Attending La Universidad de Granada has taught me a lot of things this semester, including the importance of patience during the process (admin systems are far slower than we are used to back in the UK) and more importantly, resilience, as the whole journey has been a total rollercoaster (but thankfully with FAR more highs than lows).
For example, I received full marks on my first piece of work and it’s safe to say that I was absolutely thrilled! However, a few weeks later I had a massive confidence knock after revising really hard for an exam and only getting 3%… 3%! Luckily, after a tough week, I was able to get an appointment with my lecturer to ask how I could improve my terrible mark, and it turns out that she’d corrected it wrong (as it was a multiple-choice exam) and that I had in fact passed!
Speaking Spanish with my new friends has definitely been challenging, but I couldn’t have wished for a more supportive and patient group of people and chatting with them has been the best way to improve my language skills by far. Naturally I’ve made some funny mistakes along the way, for example, I told them all that I was going to “cagar” my mobile phone, instead of “cargar” … look it up!
I still have to pinch myself sometimes, as it’s crazy to wrap my head around the fact that I’m actually living in Spain, but I’m reminded daily by the gorgeous scenery and beautiful sunsets. I’m really excited to see what new adventures the next semester brings, and to travel Spain a little bit more, as I feel that I’ve spent most of this semester in Granada settling in. Whilst some of my friends from British Universities are jetting off to spend their second semester in different parts of the world, embarking on exciting new adventures, I for one couldn’t be happier that I get to spend another 5 months in this incredible city, improving my language skills further and creating memories that will last a lifetime 😊.