Saturday Fun

Yesterday was a blast. Started the day with a stunning view of the sun just about to peak over the Sierra Nevada mountains from my patio (our apartment is on the 6th floor).

 

The group met up and boarded a bus with the beach on their minds. We first stopped in Almuñeca and climbed the hill that led to El Castillo de San Miguel. The castle was beautiful with a breathtaking view at the top.

Then we boarded the bus again and soon arrived in Nerja where we walked through la Cueva de Nerja, which is a huge cave with walking paths. I could have stayed in there for hours just marveling at the patterns of ribbon-like rocks and vast caverns. Though unfortunately, the walk was meant to be rather quick as we had to get back up and eat lunch at the attached restaurant.

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la comida
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View from seat at restaurant

Back on the bus to zoom down to the beach, still in Nerja. Right away, us who were bravest took a plunge into the icy ocean. The air was warm and we climbed some large boulders and then lay on the beach, dozing off slightly. It was so wonderful and relaxing and I cannot wait to return! I cannot believe that it is January. What a great trip with absolutely perfect weather.

Rugby in Spain

Great news! After searching online for a women’s rugby team in the area and asking at the Centro de Lenguas Modernas (where I will be taking classes), I have found a team to join and play with for the semester! I went to my first practice last night (1/21/16) with a friend, Sharissa, from UNH and it was fantastic. We got a little lost on the way, but eventually found it and jumped right in. There were about 14 or 15 other girls at practice, all speaking in rapid Spanish and Sharissa and I were keeping up the best we could. It must have been much harder for her though, because she has never played rugby before and is learning for the very first time, in Spain, with Spaniards, can you imagine?! So proud of her.

Practices will take place from 9:30 to 11pm Tuesday and Thursday nights and I am still trying to figure out when games will be and how that works. All of the girls on the team were so welcoming and nice and didn’t seem to mind at all that Sharissa has never played. They remind me a lot of my team back home which I miss dearly. I did not, unfortunately, bring my rugby gear thinking that I would not be able to find a team. But worry not! My dad will be sending me my rugby stuff in the mail so hopeful that will get here asap!

Overall, what a crazy experience already. I am so happy and thankful to have the opportunity to continue playing this semester with a group of great girls. Stay tuned, I am sure there will be more rugby news to come in the future.

A walk with Profesora Maria Carmen

Yesterday the group met back up to go for another tour around Granada. I didn’t take too many pictures, but here are a few from la Iglesia San Juan de Dios, a gigantic church here with detail you have never seen in your life. Supposedly, long ago the church was decorated elaborately because the kings of that time had all sorts of nice things and palaces and such and the church believed that God is above the king and therefore they adorned the church with decorations and gold; most is just paint, but that definitely made it a sight to behold.

 

The First Week (not even)

Got the ball rolling right away. The first night I was here, we went to a soccer game between Granada and Valencia. Although I hadn’t slept at all the night before, I had a blast. It was a good game, but unfortunately Granada lost. There was a cheering section on their side that was chanting, cheering, and singing for the entire game. I wish I had known the chants so I could have joined them.

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I have already been to see La Alhambra more than once and it is as beautiful as the pictures show. I have walked so much and couldn’t love it more. I have seen so much of the city already and have so much to see still.

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Granada
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La Alhambra
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La Alhambra

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AND I also have already made a trip to Madrid for a night to attend a concert. I went with three other girls from my group to see Hozier and it was nothing short of amazing. and the venue was great. If you are ever in Madrid and want to see a concert, I recommend going to Sala Riviera. Also we of course walked around beforehand, got some coffee, and visited la Plaza Mayor and la Puerta del Sol. La Plaza Mayor is the most famous in Madrid, complete with street performers and artists and surronded by shops ans restaurants with a bronze statue of King Phillip III at the center of the square, created by Jean Boulogne and Pietro Tacca in 1616.

HERE WE GO

All packed and ready to go. My dad will be home from work any minute now to bring me to JFK! Flying to Madrid first and then to Granada from there. My host mother, Elena, will be picking me up from the airport and bringing me to my new home for the next 4 1/2 months. Nervous, excited, and curious, I am setting out on this new adventure and I can’t wait to see what is in store for me. Well, my dad just walked in the door so off I go! Next post will be from Granada!!!All packed