Thursday, February 24, 2011
As I am sure anyone who is learning a foreign language has experienced, I have definitely embarrassed myself in Spanish to other students and the locals. My mom just wrote me about her experience abroad in the Netherlands, when she ordered a fish with no legs (meaning to ask for a fish with no bones), only for the waiter to reply that ALL fish have no legs. I can relate. These are my worst two so far:
1. About two weeks in, I was at lunch one day talking with my Señora and fumbled my words (botched the gender, number, tense, the whole shebang) like four sentences in a row. Naturally, she couldn't understand what I was trying to say. So we were laughing and I said, "¡Estoy embarazada!", which cued more laughter from her. Apparently "Estoy AVERGONZADO" is the correct way to say "I am embarrassed." "Estoy EMBARAZADA" means "I am pregnant."
2. This past Sunday, my church, which is really small, had a cultural celebration day, where they had something interesting from each nationality represented in the congregation (of which there are TONS). Mainly dancing and singing. Then someone was like, "Let's get all the American students up there!" So there are about 15 of us, and we passed the microphone around to say one thing that has made Seville a great experience or that is different to us, etc. I love my Señora (who is a member at this church), so I wanted to say that she was one of the reasons I love it here; that she is the best in Seville. Small problem. Didn't really know the crucial difference between la mayor (the oldest) and la mejor (the best). So, on my turn, I took the microphone and told the whole congregation that I love Mari Carmen and that she is the oldest in Seville. Everyone laughed, including Carmen, and I fixed it. Not my greatest moment.
I love hearing stories like these - everyone in our program has at least one or two.
This week has been crazy. Just finished up my exam for Spanish 102 and am packing for an EARLY departure tomorrow to go visit the Canary Islands! Two friends and I are staying in a place near the beach on the south side of the big island. I'm excited to explore the area and hopefully get a cool hike in there somewhere as well. I’m packing myself as many sandwiches as I can so I can buy as little food as possible while there.
Cathedral and Carmona
Tuesday, February 22, 2011
These are pictures of 2 events: The first few are from a field trip with my professor to Sevilla´s cathedral, named Giralda, the third largest in the world. We walked to the top of the belltower and looked out over the city. Interesting fact: it used to be a Muslim tower, and since the call to prayer was 5 times a day, they took it easy on the bell ringer guy by constructing the path up the tower with ramps, not stairs, so he could ride a horse the whole way. The next pictures are in Carmona, a small city where we took a day trip to sightsee and walk around this past Saturday.
Sunday, February 13, 2011
In honor of Valentine's Day, I thought I'd show you a really cute element of Sevilla. To express their endless love for one another, couples in Seville will write their names on a padlock and lock it onto a spindle of the Triana Bridge. Then they throw the key into the river so that it can never be unlocked. Word on the street is that this love padlock phenomenon happens all over Europe on bridges in Prague, London, and more. Call me a hopeless romantic, but I like to think that all these couples are still together.
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Here are pictures from last Friday's day trip to the city of Córdoba, about a 2-hour bus ride from Sevilla. We mainly focused on La Mezquita (The Mosque) de Córdoba. It's a really interesting building because it was first Muslim, then Christian, then Muslim again, and finally Roman Catholic. Each one sort of tried to top the last with its additions in construction.
After the tour, we ate lunch in a park and explored the city. The city was beautiful, but almost empty, which was a weird feeling. It felt almost like the set of a play. The colors here were awesome. I've decided I'm painting all the walls in my house yellow and red. Just a heads-up to Mom and Dad.