The first few weeks are always chaotic, but they are also insanely fun as we cram in everything possible, ensuring the students get the most out of the semester from Day One. This Spring semester in Barcelona with our Southern California Foothills Consortium is no different. With 66 students and 3 faculty, arrivals flowed smoothly into orientation and sightseeing before classes began. Shortly thereafter, the Student Services office became a hive of life!
Signing up the new names and faces for events, leading gaggles of newbies around the city and introducing them to Spanish culture through lectures and tapas is a big effort. Relax at the weekend? Why bother? So we took them to Montserrat and Sitges, and a Barcelona game all in one day. We were all pretty exhausted but thankfully Barça weren’t; the azulgranas won 6-1. A fantastic end to Week One!
Week Two dawned and we threw more culture and food at the group. Our Wine & Cheese Tasting night was guzzled down gratefully and then our first Cooking Class featured ‘healthy’ helpings of calçots and romesco sauce, tortilla española, paella and crema catalana. There were also academic classes along the way; Speech and Communication, History, and of course, Spanish!
Time for a rest? No, we weren’t quite there yet! 24 of us then headed to Madrid. The trip to Madrid included visits to some of the world’s top art galleries, calamari sandwiches, sangria, churros and chocolate, royal history and experiencing the eclectic nightlife.
Back in Barcelona, we give thanks for the long weekend, bringing an opportunity to enjoy a quiet day and even a siesta to prepare us for our next adventure!
Love from Barna,
AIFS Program Coordinator, Barcelona