Having my parents and aunt in Spain was a great experience for me. When it was the day for them to leave and I had already sent them off I realized how much I really missed them! My experience in Granada has been an eye-opening one. Every day I come to the realization that there is something that I am grateful in my life or something that I develop a new apprecation for. But these are all things that I can revisit in another blog. For now, to get up to date! Vamos a actualizar este blog!

It was a task trying to plan a week long experience abroad for 3 people! I felt very accomplished after ¨completing¨ the day-by-day schedule. The remaining day for that week where I would have class (Thursday, with classes at 10-11:30, 1-2:30, and 6:30-8), I didn´t realize how OVERWHELMED I would feel! Having it be my family´s first full day visiting my hometown, the last thing I wanted was for them to be sitting around in the apartment disappointed/bored all day. In addition to that, on Thursday my little host sister invited me to her dance recital ¨actualizacion¨, I believe she called it. She had asked me I think three weeks or so in advance and I took some time thinking on it because my parents would be here their first very day/night and the chances weren´t high of them being able to join us! Marisa, Marisa Madre, y Juan (Paloma's father) found out when we were at the performance that the entire performance was set up as a charity event to help a school in Haiti! I felt so proud that together we were able to share this and represent Haiti!

So I had to ask myself when was the next time I would be able to see my little sister perform in a show? When I did that, I found it to be a no brainer. I would skip class and of course, my family understood my thought process as well, and I was grateful! We arranged it so we could also have our first family meeting :) Although it was a little bit of a hassle to figure out the Granada bus schedule (because I KNOW I was ultimately useless in deciphering the stations and bus ¨map¨ my host father had emailed me...because I walk EVERYWHERE! So there are pros and cons to that... I get more exercise but when people are visiting me and we have limited time to get places...I felt very inutil and frustrated / embarassed! No matter how many times I intended to use that bus map to try and configure other routes other than the 11 Circular that seems like it takes you to the edge of the earth and back, I could never be certain what I was looking at exactly.) So next best options that we found as an alternative to walking? Taxis, duh. Thankfully since Granada is relatively small, making the small trips with the 4 of us wasn´t too much of a burden, I don´t think. Hope you can say the same/can vouge for that, Dad?

First family encounter:) Elevator up to floor 7! My host family was in a bit of a rush to get Paloma ready for the recital but she was dressed in her bright green Flamenco dress (she has to get a new one every year because she´s constantly growing!), glowing and practicing her steps. Marisa helped her with her makeup and luckily for me Marisa Madre (my host grandmother) had arrived just arrived my parents and I. Antonio made us all coffee and sat and spoke with my parents. It was fun to see all of the interaction, meaning..my mom speaking with Antonio y Marisa Madre y my aunt adding in some Spanish comments too, and then there was my dad, who was speaking at what probably seemed like 1,000 words a minute in...wait for it, ENGLISH.  It was also a little bit difficult to try to coordinate schedules with my Spanish host family too to make sure that both of my parents met one another and were able to spend a little time getting to know one another, but I felt we were able to do the best with what we could :) 

To recap the trip that could be described in millions of words and many different posts. Over the course of the week: We were able to have a Spanish dinner together with my Spanish parents and grandmother although my Spanish sister was away for the weekend) and we had a Haitian dinner, thanks to my mom and my aunt. We spent a day, a night, and an afternoon in Sevilla during Las Ferias annual festival although it was raining part of the time. Before we left for Sevilla we were able to try some Spanish churros although they were the best Spain's ever seen. When we returned to mi hogar, my parents came to support me in my very first race ever! Although it was only about 3.2 K and it was raining, it was still a cool experience for me to have in Spain. I was standing around the crowded starting line not knowing anyone and at the end of the race it was crazy trying to find my parents again out of what felt like millions of spectators and participants! Unfortunately in the apartment at night it was a bit uncomfortable with the cooler weather during the day, so the weather at night was much cooler than we desired. Luckily, when we went to our first REAL BULL FIGHT EVER --my family was able to experience some serious Andalusian sun in the Plaza de Toros de Granada. In our seats the sun was shining on us from essentially beginning to end. It was like we were the center of the show with my program.

We did do some shopping and got some souvenirs and were able to try the infamous Los Italianos ice cream, and of course TAPAS throughout the tour. To end the week tour of southern Spain we went to Mirador de San Nicolas, where we were able to see what is arguably considered one of the best sunsets of the world. The next and final morning, we had to wake up at 4am to make sure we could prepare all of their suitcases and etc. to leave the apartment clean. To catch the 5:20 airport shuttle bus from Calle Gran Via de Colon (right smak dab in the middle of the city), we made sure to leave the with all of their suitcases and necessities by 4:45. It was a very chill morning and as a family we sat outside at one of the bus stops. After the shuttle came to pick them up and we hugged and sad our goodbyes I returned to the apartment to get some more sleep. We had all gone to bed after midnight that night so when I woke up I didn't feel very refreshed. And when I woke up (because I had class at 10am), I woke up to voices, but I was saddened that they were not those of my parents. :( It was a different feeling that I had not experienced all the while while here in Spain... Obviously I've missed my family and friends and certain things about life in the states but I haven't been home sick or been so saddened about the life I've left behind (for a chapter of my life) to where I was moved to that feeling of sadness and teary eyes. I love you Mom, Dad, Yanick, and I'm so glad that you guys came to see me. I know it was a vacation for you guys (I sincerely hope that it felt like it..for the most part!) but having people visit me in a foreign city was a learning experience in itself for me. 

Here is the official schedule of the week to give all a better idea of WHAT we did as well as what type of plan I constructed!
You say you're coming to Granada? (Which is a must..) These are things that you should definitely intend to see! I recommend a week and a half, although a week could be sufficient (to see the main areas and must-sees of Granada) if you don´t do traveling within that week, as we had. And skip classes! (as I hadn't.. :P) To sell you some more, Granada is the ONLY city in Spain that gives FREE TAPAS with every drink ordered!

/uploads/9/8/6/0/9860455/itinerary.docx

 


Comments

mom
18/05/2012 14:50

We thank you for sharing Granada with us. Te amo mucho tu querida madre.
Bendicion hija

Reply



Leave a Reply