What a warm welcome home from this weekend. Today I spent lots of time with really good company, ate great food, and learned a lot about Spanish.

First, I had my literature midterm. It was pretty difficult, and the grading depends entirely on what the professor will give me credit for. I know I did well on the multiple choice, but the second half of the test was free response in Spanish. I did my best, but I don’t always know how to explain my thoughts in detail in Spanish, so it will just depend on what the professor was looking for. I tried to show knowledge of the texts, analyses of them, and answer the questions, but none of that was done very well, and I’m aware of that. I’m just glad I didn’t waste too much time stressing over the exam because it is just never worth it to me.

After my classes, I came home to a special lunch because my roommate’s parents are here for the week! We had a plate of Salamanca jamón, lomo, and chorizo with fresh bread. Then salad and my host mom’s delicious chicken paella, and of course, pastries and fruit for dessert. Our host mom told her parents that when we’re here, she treats us like we’re her daughters, and I don’t doubt it.

After lunch, I went to my room to study for my next midterm, lengua, which went really well because it’s concepts that I just want to know to help me understand and be better at Spanish. Studying is fun when you’re excited and eager to learn something. I studied until it was time to teach my host mom’s granddaughter. Today we briefly reviewed her natural science work, then played a game in English before the lesson was cut short so she can study for her lengua test too. After that, I went back to studying and trying to understand these Spanish grammar rules.

At 8:30, my roommate, her parents, two of our friends, and I met under the Plaza clock to go out to dinner. I got a veggie burger for the first time in months and french fries, and we all sat and talked and laughed in the crowded Irish pub for about an hour. I hardly remember what we talked about, but I know I was happy and feeling good, and I loved being around such sweet parents and friends. After dinner, my roommate’s parents went back to their hotel and one of our friends went home to study, but the other three of us stopped into a classy bar for one more drink before home and studying. I got a very elegant frappuccino which you can see above. Then we just talked. About boys, about life, about how little time we have left on this trip, about our travels, about dresses, about the things we have to do when we finally go home. It felt incredible to have these awesome ladies to talk to and hang out with on a Tuesday night. I’m glad I decided to stay out with them, and I’m glad I have them on this trip. It’s good to have time to just be and talk with good people, and to not be on phones or distracted but just there with each other. I’m feeling grateful and happy tonight for my host family, these friends, and the people I get to meet because of them. The world is small and life, beautiful.

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