Wednesday, August 1, 2012

¡Hola a todos!

It's been a hectic couple of days!

All of my flights went pretty well, and aside from nearly leaving my passport behind in a bathroom in Barcelona, there's not much to report there.

I arrived here in Málaga yesterday afternoon and took a taxi for the first time right to my home stay.

I have a roommate, Mary, and we each have our own room and share a bathroom.
Everything is already so different from my experiences in France. My home stay is located in an apartment building and everything is so tiny, especially the elevator. The "kitchen" here is more like a narrow hallway with cooking appliances throughout it. Even though we're all about the same size, it's tough for two people to move around in the kitchen without knocking things over. The lock to the front door of the apartment building is really difficult to work with, and so far we've only been able to open the door once by ourselves.

Our host mother, Karina, is super nice and patient, and she knows a good bit of English. Her son is away camping with his dad, so we haven't gotten to meet him yet.
There's a great view out of my bedroom window, and it takes only a couple minutes to walk right down to the beach. Karina's friend noted that I could use a bit more time in the sun, haha.

The beach itself is really nice, there's a good bit of sand (I was expecting it to be a lot rockier), there are umbrellas everywhere, and the water is about the same temperature as I'm used to in the Atlantic. We're planning on spending time at the beach tomorrow after classes. There are only nine students in our program, half of us are from Westminster, and Mary and I have made friends with a couple of other girls from the program (day 1.5 and cliques have already formed)

I slept for a good part of the day after arriving here and getting introduced with Karina. It's really warm here, but it's a lot different from Pittsburgh. It's not humid at all, and the heat doesn't seem to peak until late in the afternoon (which is siesta time anyway!), and overall the weather is just gorgeous. Málaga is tucked in under some mountains and it seems to get a bit misty in the morning... there are palm trees everywhere... and the buildings are all so diverse and unique it's really just a lovely place.

So far everyone's been super friendly, and the Spanish are so much louder and more outgoing than the French. I still keep thinking in French half the time but hopefully it won't be long before I get more used to using Spanish. I'm surprised at how well I've been able to communicate, though, and understanding people hasn't been too bad either. It's not perfect, but I've been able to keep my conversations simple and our host mother says both Mary and I speak Spanish really well. I know I still have another program in Granada coming up, but I really hope I learn a lot here! I can already tell that I'm going to miss Málaga like crazy after this month is over.

It's seriously the most gorgeous night out tonight and it's such a shame that I'm still a bit tired from everything. I know there'll be plenty more nights like this, but it's just beautiful, it's about 10PM and it only just started getting dark.

My view from my bedroom during the day. This part of the city that we live in is called the Malagueta.

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