Thursday, March 24, 2011

No Spain, No Gain

Last week I had the pleasure of visiting one of my oldest friends in Spain. I bought my tickets months ago and I had been looking forward to this trip ever since I returned home from Peru. Rachel lives in Santiago de Compostela, a beautiful city in Galicia, in the northwest. Here we are:

I had the chance to visit a cathedral that houses James, the apostle of Christ. If that's not an indication of how old it is, the last renovation this cathedral underwent happened ONE THOUSAND YEARS AGO.

I was in Santiago for seven short days. Within this time I hiked, took a day trip to Finisterra (people used to think this was the end of the world!), ate delicious seafood (octupus and mussels), played apples to apples with Rachel's international friends, and had some chocolate with churros. In all, it was a wonderful trip and it meant a lot to me to visit Spain, the motherland of my favorite language.

Going to Spain, Central America (Nicaragua) and studying in Peru have all been vastly different experiences. I tried picturing myself studying in Santiago, living how Rachel was in an apartment with Spanish speakers. I just couldn't picture it because of its stark difference from my experience. While I would inevitably enjoy the Spanish life, I don't think that I would have learned as much about myself by living there.

I know that I am very young, but I still think that it is important to reflect on the things that I have done. Going to Spain was the best thing that I could have done. It was amazing to reconnect with Rachel and validate my time in Peru. Even though it was never easy, I know that I made the right choice by studying there. I hope that all of you can look back on your lives and pinpoint certain actions that you know you did right by. It really is a great feeling.

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