Saturday, May 8, 2010

Growing up.

Ok, so I am the worst person at following through at what I had said I would do! These past couple of weeks have been absolutely crazy, especially this week as María Antonia y José Antonio have been in the Caribbean, and I've been doing a lot of stuff to help out around the house.

I'm not going to dwell on the past few weeks that I've missed, because if I did, we'd be here till Christmas. Instead, I'll tell you this. Going away on holidays for three weeks and then coming back to school was the best thing that could have happened to me. It showed me just how much my language skills could grow and strengthen in just three small weeks. It showed me that everyday I am progressing. Starting school after three weeks, and seeing the giant leap in my understanding of everything was incredibly amazing, and such an encouragement... another reason why I love holidays!!

I am about to go to Zaragoza for the weekend, so if I end this post incredibly short or in the middle of something, that's why. I just want to get something up, and show you guys a little bit of what I've been up to.

These past two weeks, Spring has come and disappeared. There was about a week, where we were reaching 30 degrees, and I was absolutely loving it. The sun, the smiles people had their faces, the flowers blooming - especially the flowers blooming. I love this time of year, and I was skipping about, smelling the flowers, grinning from ear to ear. A couple of people looked at me strangely, probably thinking about how I was like this when it snowed. I love being able to see how the seasons change - and how we change with it. After about a week of this, the weather suddenly changed. It has been a wintry week, full of rain, dark clouds, and lots of wind. And I have loved it! I love rainy days, and hearing the rain fall on the roof... (not so much here, now that I'm on the bottom floor of a four story house!) I think that I am the type of person that will find something she loves out of everything. So, many people have complained and groaned about the weather, but I am really enjoying it. Can't wait for Spring again, but while this cold, dreary weather is here, I'm going to soak it up!
Me in the windy wind... the umbrella was broken beyond repair!

My town in the rain... How gorgeous!

Another photo of my gorgeous town :)

I have been able to experience so many things here in Spain. I have been continually challenged by typical European stereotypes, and how true they are. There are so many things that I read about Spain that are true, and others that are wrong.

  • They are LOUD.
  • My breakfast is very typical of Spain. A hot cup of milk and chocolate (or coffee) with bollos (like buns, but with sugar or something sweet on top).
  • Night life is crazy. I can be walking around at 2 am in the morning, and it's the equivalent of 8pm on a Friday night in Springwood. Children in prams, people having coffees, people still eating dinner. It's such a shock to see such young kids out so late!
  • They are very forward. I've had people tell me when I'm blushing, if they think I've lost weight, if I am sounding stupid, if I'm doing something wrong, if I look like an idiot, if I look nice, why someone is really away ("Oh, she has really bad period cramps today, so she's not here."). They're not afraid to hurt your feelings, and not afraid to praise you. It's refreshingly lovely.
  • The boys are very forward. Pretty much, any foreign girl is going to have to get used to being yelled at ("GUAPAAAAA!!!!" or if you're blonde, "RUBIAAAA!!!") by men, young and old.
  • The people are warm. So warm and lovely. For me, I am only just starting to see the true depths and colours of my classmates, but it is such a joy. I love watching Savier yelling at the filosofía teacher, or the constant "por faaa's" to go to the toilet, the excited "dame chicle!" when they see you have chewy, the smiles and friendly touches they give each other, the playful banter, the way they interact with each other. Everything just yells Spain, and makes me incredibly happy and excited that this is something I get to experience.
  • Tortillas. Best things ever invented.
  • Wine. With every meal (even breakfast!)
  • Food in general.
  • Siestas. We have them. The shops close from 2:30-5pm. I actually love that it's closed, and that on Sundays, nothing will be open. So different, and so... relaxing!
  • Everyone gets angry very quickly. It's not unusual for me to go through a day with 5 different arguments that all lead to loud yelling. Though, five minutes later they'll be laughing and playing like nothing ever happened.
  • Fiestas. So much fun. So traditionally Spanish.
  • Everyone smokes. Children (yes, children!) gather outside of the school gates before class starts, smoking, and at the end of the day, as soon as they're out the door, out comes the cigarette and the lighter. My clothes permanently smell of smoke. Something I don't like about Spain!
  • LOVE FOR FÚTBOL. I really do love it, when I feel like I can hear the whole town scream "GOOOOOLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!!!" when a goal is scored.
I've also been excited to discover so many things that are different. I thought it was just the French that wore berets and ate baguettes. I thought it was just the Italians that said, "Mamma mia!" (Though, the Spanish say, "Madre mia!). I love discovering this country and I love that so many Spanish stereotypes are so true.


  1. Thanks for the change in colours of the font & background eyes greatly appreciate it!! :)

    So loved this blog about the 'real' Spain. I can almost feel myself there beside you.

    Great pic of the brolley blowing by the way LOL

    Lots of Love
    Aunty Lois

  2. Wow. Now who are you again? You sound like a new version of the Laura that we had here as our daughter. Impressive stuff I have to say. That was an incredible post from an incredible person. Love you. Your proud Dad.xxxxxxxxxxxoooooooooooo

  3. like the change of background, didn't think it would matter much until it changed! white background is easier to read! this was really interesting, love hearing what is normal but different to here, and what things are the same. and love knowing what you have been getting up to and how you feel. :) xo