After arriving in Granada, I cannot help but feel as though I am staying in one of the prettiest places in the world. The locals boast that it is one of the few places where you can see snow and sand in the same day. Depending on the direction, you can take a bus to the mountains or the beach in less than thirty minutes. I cannot wait to explore every corner of this city.
Typical house that can be found in the old city of Granada.
(Found this gem exploring the city with a friend the other day.)
The day after arriving in Granada, we began preparing for classes. I must say, starting classes was one of the most exciting, yet entirely nerve racking experiences of my life. Before being enrolled, we all had to take a four hour placement exam which basically determined if we would receive credit for this summer. This exam was broken up into a three part process of written, grammar, and oral tests. Luckily, I was at the level that I expected and will be receiving credit for all of my classes.
Pro Tip: RELAX. If you are ever in this situation while studying abroad, please remember to take a deep breath. Getting worked up will probably make you do worse, rather than better. Also, remember that regardless of where you place, you will actually be learning at the level best for you not just for your class credit– which, in all honesty, is the purpose of taking these classes in the first place.
Above is a picture of the main building where my classes take place. It might look small, but there are at least twenty different rooms that are hidden to the eye. Everyday makes you feel like you’re on an adventure just to go to class. If you’re lucky, I will take a video next week just to show you what I mean.
Anyways, all of my classes are taught entirely in Spanish and I cannot wait to see how my knowledge of Spanish grows in the next two months. The classes I am taking for this month are Business Spanish, Geography, History of Spain, and History of Spanish Art. I am a little nervous for the Business Spanish, but feel like I will learn a lot about Spain through all of my classes.
Following the same format as my previous post, I would like to continue to share my lessons with you all. My only concrete “Granada Lesson” that I can give you as of right now is Embrace all aspects of a new culture, regardless if it seems strange from your own. Prime example, tapas. I do not know if you all are familiar with Spain, but if you are you understand that tapas (basically fancy appetizers) are an enormous part of Spanish culture. Basically, every beverage you buy you are offered free tapas. Sometimes, you are unfamiliar with what is offered to you, but my friends please try these delicious delicacies. The other night, I was given berenjenas fritas con miel de caña. For my non-Spanish speaking audience that is fried eggplant and honey. At first glance, I thought that it was a strange combination but in reality, it is probably one of the best things I have tasted. If I would have trusted my conceived bias I would have missed out on quite possibly the tastiest tapa Granada has to offer.
(My apologies, for not having a picture. I was too busy focusing on it’s insanely amazing flavor).
I would like to end each of my blog posts with “Weekly Travels.” During my first weekend here, our group had the opportunity to go the Alhambra. The Alhambra is a famous Moorish palace that is found in Granada and was the last city of the Muslim empire in Spain. What is really exciting is that I learned about all of the architecture of the Alhambra in my Art History class. It was absolutely amazing to experience what I had learned.
Here are some pictures that I took:
The entrance of the Alhambra’s garden
Part of Palacio del Generalife Gardens in the Alhambra
My friends, thank you all so much for your love and support. I am absolutely loving my time here.
Until next time!