My life is finally starting to resemble some sort of a routine. I’m into my first week of my actual university classes. Monday-Wednesday is Intensive Writing and Critical Thinking at the CIEE Palacio and Modern History of Spain at the University, Tuesday-Thursday is Past and Present of the Spanish Language and Three Cultures in Spain: Christians, Muslims, and Jews, both at the University. All of them are great but the History gets a little tedious. I understand the Professor but I have to say history is not my favorite subject. I need to decide by tomorrow if I want to switch out. I LOVE the Spanish Language class…its definitely right up my alley. The goal is to learn about the different influences on the Spanish language throughout history and how the language is structured as a result. There were only 13 people the first day and we need 10 enrolled to keep the class. I’m crossing my fingers.
Sunday I went with my señora and Miguel on a little outing. We took the bus to the Basilica de la Macarena and she showed me the hotel she works in. The Basilica was gorgeous but the batteries in my camera were dead. She bought me a little pendent with the Virgin on it. It was really pretty and I was very appreciative. I’ve been asked 2 or 3 times if I’m Catholic since I’ve been here. I keep saying, no, I’m Luterana (Lutheran) but they either don’t understand me or don’t know what that is. I think my señora thinks I’m saying Lituania (Lithuania), no wonder she’s confused. I said it’s a Christian religion similar to Catholicism in the U.S. but its a bit different. I’m thinking of showing them the Spanish Wikipedia page on Lutheranism.
She works at the Hotel Macarena, apparantly a very prestigious hotel right across from the Andalusian Parliament Building (where I’ve been lost no less than 3 times). The first time I saw the Hotel was after dark one night trying to find my way home. I remember thinking how beautiful it was but I had no idea what it was. She took me in and introduced me to Javier who was working at the front desk. She talked with him for a bit and then showed me the ball rooms and patios. We went downstairs where the maids have their lockers and a little kitchen/dining room. She introduced me to all the ladies as her Americana, they were all great. Totally reminded me of a scene in ‘Maid in Manhattan.’
Hotel Macarena
After our tour and the bus ride back to Triana, we went out for cervecitas and food. We had the best shrimp, some meatball type things, jamón (delicious Spanish cured ham), pan (bread) of course, and a pitcher of CruzCampo. Andrea (middle daughter) and her boyfriend joined us. I was totally in over my head with all the Spanish. We stood outside and ate and they chatted for close to hour while I tried to keep up with the conversation. We walked to another little cafe closer to home and sat outside for a while. I tried natilla, I knew it was something with nata (cream) but other than that I had no idea and they couldn’t really explain it. It ended up being a sort of pudding type thing. They chatted some more, I listened and stayed about 5 minutes behind the conversation. I was able to respond somewhat when they asked me questions but as far as actually participating in the conversation…my head was exploding.
I’ve spent the last few days after class getting lost and finding new things. I walked around a for a few hours on Monday and found some great parks near to the University. Yesterday, I was walking between classes and got lost next to the Alcázar in the old Jewish neighborhood. Other places of interest: a really quaint bookstore near the Cathedral and the ceramic shops in Triana. New goal is to get lost at least once a week, that’s the only way to learn your way and find stuff.
New Discovery, Parque de María Luisa

I plan to return and spend some time looking
for the perfect keepsake book

The little British lady who works there was
sitting behind this stack of books reading 🙂

Truly Spanish Literature
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