Slipping back into student life in Salamanca
Trip Start May 04, 2010
21Trip End Ongoing
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I came to the beautiful university city of Salamanca on the advice of my Spanish penpal, Sara, who explained that her home town is renouned for it's inhabitants speaking the purest form of Spanish, as well as boasting the most magnificent Plaza Mayor (central square) in Spain. She was right on both counts, although, upon being dropped off by a taxi at the wrong place on arrival and subsequently struggling with my landlady on the telephone with neither of us speaking each others' languages, my first thoughts were, "Oh god, what have I got myself into here!" Then, even more so the next day turning up for classes at Berceo Academy for them to say, "We have a problem with you,..we have no absolute beginner classes"
Still, after a little bit of a shaky start, I settled into the student residence well and was fast tracked with one-on-one Spanish tutition
The student residence was the best thing I could have done - I was able to meet and hang out with some great people from across the world...America, England, Finland, France, Germany, Indonesia, Hungary who had all come to Salamanca to study Spanish. While we were all split up between different apartments, we ate lunch and dinner together in Anna's flat where failure to speak in Spanish saw some people slapped across the back of the head! I developed a keen sense for listening in Anna's presence!
Aside from the Spanish language experience, Salamanca was the most special place out of my time in Spain for meeting Sara, a Spanish girl who I pen-befriended as a 13 year old. Thanks to the wonders of Facebook, where Sara tracked me down after some years hiatus in writing, we met for the first time face to face in Salamanca in a very bizarre fashion running into each other in the street outside her parents' house before our scheduled meeting time. It went something like, "Sara...?", "Amy...?"....hug, kiss, kiss. A wonderful memory and end to a great story!
In spite of having exams, Sara came back for both weekends while I was in Salamanca introducing me to all her friends there, taking me out to her family's country house with her parents and lending her boyfriend as tour guide for the city. Salamanca really was a different place with a local friends :-)