Hi everyone! I am sorry it has been so long since I have posted, but life got really busy here in Spain due to midterms! Who knew that studying abroad actually included "studying"???
Well I made it through alive. Whoever planned midterms to be the week after Carnaval was just plain cruel. For those of you who haven't heard yet, Carnaval is a full weekend festival, a mix between mardi-gras (with street parades and plaza parties) and Halloween (EVERYONE, of all ages, dresses up in costumes)!! Half of the kids from school went down to Cadiz, and half of us stayed in Toledo. Needless to say it was an amazing weekend. The first night my friend and I dressed up as Minnie-Mouse, and the next night we were fairies! However, that following Monday was crunch time! Every waking moment (which was usually 20 out of 24 hours each day) was devoted to reading, studying, and writing papers.
I had two take home exams. One of the was for my Politics and Society in Latin America class where the directions were as follows: "Write a 5 page paper, single spaced about everything we have learned this semester, in whatever format you would like." Great, thanks for the guidance! I got an A though! The next take home was for my Businesses in Spain class where we had to classify two different Spanish companies into sectors, type of company etc, and write two summaries of two different Spanish companies from two different sectors. Still waiting on that grade. Another class (Linguistics) had an open notes/ open book test applying everything we have learned, and I got an A on that as well. My Spanish Culture class (which I studied the hardest for) was a 4 essay test that I had thought I did really well on... B-. VERY disappointed! The last one is another Business class (all about running/ opening/ operating/ a business and economy in Spain) and I'm still waiting on that grade.
Well after that crazy week we all went out on Thursday night and had a great time. We went to the house of two guys that are from California! They graduated last May and are teaching English here in Toledo for a year! It sounds like a fantastic job, something I might want to look into! Friday, I slept for a lot of the day (to catch up from the week of ZERO sleep) and went to a free play with a couple people from class. IT WAS REALLLLLLY WEIRD. Saturday a group of us went to Madrid to spend the night there. My boyfriend was finally coming home from Italy, so I met him at the airport, and went to his house for dinner with his friends, and went out to a couple bars with him and his friends. Sunday we had a luxurious breakfast at McDonald's and went to the market! A pretty chill weekend overall.
This week is the beginning of the second half of the semester and I've decided to crack down on classes. No more putting things off, I am doing things before they need to be done. I need to take more time to just think, figure things out, plan what I want to do, and just be me. These 6 months are going so fast! It's already March, in less than a month it will be Spring Break, and then the end of the semester, traveling for a while, and back to the real world, or just a different world. When I first got here I didn't immediately fall in love with the country, but it was different and new so I of course entertained ideas of staying here, studying here again, or working here in the future. After a couple months here though, I have come to realize that different isn't always better. There are so many things I miss about home and took for granted back home. For example, living on my own with friends. Here in Spain unemployment is approaching 20% and is most prevalent for people 35 and younger. For this, only 29% of everyone 30 and younger are independent economically of their parents and often still live at home! I am way too independent for that and quite frankly I am/ was a little annoyed that I am dependent on my parents for school still! I WANT to graduate, I WANT to get a good job, and I WANT to be independent. More importantly though, I want to do something I like... and right now I'm not sure what that is. This trip has made me re-evaluate many things, but one thing I do know for sure: I am coming home, and I am excited about it.