Julia SMU-in-Paris

Julia is a junior from Plano majoring in history, with a French minor, and is a member of the University Honors Program. She is studying abroad with SMU-in-Paris in fall 2007.

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Donde esta la bus?

This past weekend, my friends and I jetted to Barcelona for the weekend. My friend Stephanie and I flew separately from our other four friends, and unfortunately, neither one of us speaks a lick of Spanish! We were extremely worried we wouldn’t be able to find our friends in Barcelona and would end up staying at the airport the entire time. Luckily, we used my Spanish-French dictionary that Anne Marie provided me and we were able to find our friends at the bus station!

We left Paris in the middle of a torrential downpour and arrived to a sunny, but steamy Barcelona. I’ve been to Bilbao, Spain, on the Atlantic coast, but never to the Mediterranean coast, which is much lighter, more vibrant, and definitely hotter! Not only was it my first time to the Mediterranean coast, it was my first experience staying in a hostel. I’m used to staying in nice hotels with my parents on family vacations so I had to constantly remind myself that I was not with my parents and was on a budget! Though the accommodations were a little bit sketchy, it was fun being able to stay with all of my friends in the same room, and we said several times that it felt similar to a “youth camp” experience.

Julia-Gaudi.jpg Barcelona was also my first encounter with Tapas, a traditional Spanish cuisine. Tapas are small (usually only 2-3 bites) entrees of things like enchiladas, mini burgers, chicken kebabs, scallions on toast, and thousands of other types! They are delicious and relatively cheap in Barcelona.

Julia%20-%20Barcelona.jpgMy favorite site in Barcelona was the Gaudi Park, in which there are hundreds of mosaic tile art pieces. It’s nice because people can actually walk up to the art and sit, touch, stand, or take pictures next to it. The park is also on the top of a very steep hill, so it provides a beautiful view of Barcelona and the sea!

Barcelona was a very fun trip and I have a feeling that my fall break trip to Prague, Rome, and Athens will be just as interesting and entertaining! After a very long weekend of traveling and little sleep, I have to finish my assignments for Monday; after all SMU-in-Paris isn’t all play and fun, it’s work too!

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