Thursday, January 19, 2012

Host Family!

Tuesday was the day we had all been waiting for... the day we got to meet our host families!! Most of the students choose to live with a Spanish family while they are in Spain for the semester.  All the students in our program were waiting in one room with tons of butterflies in our stomachs, we were all so nervous/excited! So finally my turn rolled around and the people that are going to be my parents for the next 5 months waited in the hallway.  I met the mother, who I now call Pepa, and the dad, whose name is Paco.  They were immediately so nice and helped me with my GIANT luggage and drove me to their house.  They live in a nice apartment about a 10 minute walk to the center of the city and about a 5-10 minute walk to the beach.  Once we got to the house, Paco and Pepa gave me a tour of the apartment and they couldnt have been sweeter! As soon as you enter, I have my own section where I have a bedroom, bathroom, and another room beside mine.  A door even will close all of this away from the rest of the house if I want to.  Paco and Pepa had made my bed, put hangers in my closet, written down the wifi information and set up a desk area for me, laid out pillows and blankets, and totally stocked the bathroom.  They laid out towels for me, all new products (like toothbrush, soap, toothpaste, qtips, lotion, sunscreen, etc) and even bought shampoo for blondes haha i guess they saw a picture of me beforehand!  They have been so accomodating and so nice!

This is the courtyard at the apartment complex. 

Pepa and I went on a long walk and she showed me all of the city and where everything was in the barrio.  We walked past the beach and talked the whole time.  We passed literally THE MOST beautiful church I've ever seen it was huge!  It was a very old catholic church and we went inside, I wish I was able to take pictures but there were people inside and obviously I didn't want to be disrespectful but it was so beautiful. We've eaten delicious dinners and lunches at the house and I have really enjoyed their company.  They have had a hard time pronouncing my name but they keep practicing and improving.  Paco is always making me talk and quizzing me on different words by pointing to items around the house because he wants me to keep practicing my spanish and improve my vocabulary.  It's been a slight adjustment obviously but I think that the change is a huge part of the experience and so far adapting to everything has been a lot of fun. 

Me on one of the pretty streets in Alicante, near el puerto or port

We started our first day of class on Wednesday and we have 2 weeks of only one intensive language class where we practice our spanish each day for 4 hours.  In the class we review our spanish and practice talking in order to prepare us for our class we take at the Universidad de Alicante.  I am nervous about that class but hopefully I will be able to understand the professor!!! On Monday most of us in the program are going to begin a program called Quijotes.  Quijotes is an agreement that you are ONLY going to talk in spanish.  We talk spanish with the other american students all the time and the only time you are allowed to speak in english is when you talk to family and friends back home.  We also have a free day on Thursday nights where we can talk in english if we want to.  Last night a group of us went out to dinner for tapas and the bar we went to had a special where all of the food was only 1 Euro!  After we watched the Barcelona vs. Madrid soccer game together, and since my family jokingly told me I was only allowed to go if I cheered for Barca, I am a Barca fan now haha.  It was fun but when I took a taxi back the driver said he did not know where my street was so I had to show him on a map and explain it to him.  I even know enough Spanish that I was able to get sassy with him and tell him I wasn't going to pay extra on the meter because he didnt know where he was going.  He cut off the meter and didnt make me pay hardly anything. 

So much has changed in so little time but I am beginning to get my bearings and figure out everything in the city! Today I'm getting a Spanish cell phone so that will help a lot too.

1 comment:

  1. mariposas en nosotros estomagos!! p.s can't believe you sassed the taxi driver! I am impressed!! hahah