Don’t mind the title. It just sounded nice in my head.
Upon arrival in Sevilla, I ask someone in Spanish how much the bus costs to get the city center. The person (in an English accent) replies back apologetically that sorry but she didn’t speak Spanish. I did it! I’m a native speaker.
Sevilla outside of the old city center feels a lot like LA (in urban design), but at this point any place over 50 degrees feels like LA. Also, I think high 50s, low 60s is about the right temperature to be a tourist, otherwise it’s sweaty and uncomfortable and the sun sucks away your energy and renders you lifeless. Sevilla was 80 degrees – aka beach weather without a beach. And I forgot to bring shorts.
For the first time on study abroad, I started to really feel a bit bothered by the unstructured-ness of my time here. The UK academic system already has less work and more independent study. Usually you can at least plan your day around meals but here that wasn’t even the case.
It’s unbelievable how much the siesta timing system changes the culture and way of life. It only took one day for me to become enveloped in it, eating lunch and napping in the late afternoon both days. It’s the worst.
I understand that a 2-3 hour break in the middle of the work and school day is just the way things work here and serves as a transfer of leisure time from the evening to the afternoon (more sunshine).
But in a sense, they are choosing between an extra round trip commute or less time for sleep.
What I don’t understand is why the day starts at the same time (8 or 9 AM) but nightlife starts so late to the point that people I spoke with would leave clubs at 7 AM and not even have time to go to bed. There’s no logical reason why it can’t start the same time as in the US or UK and allow for at least a modicum of sleep. In the same way as above, it’s like they are choosing to be unproductive.
I also don’t understand why places close at specific times in the day when – with 35% unemployment – a third of the country is on a perennial siesta (as was abundantly clear with the amount of shopping going on during the work day) and I’m sure there’d be a market for 24 hr places.
What I Did
Spain has made me too lazy to type anything else, so I’m just going to post pictures.
- 9,713 – Words written on this blog so far (About the length of a junior paper at Princeton I believe)
- 9 – UNESCO World Heritage Sites (Westminster, Tower of London, Kew Gardens, Sintra, Tower of Belem, Stonehenge, Bath, Serra de Tramuntana, Sevilla Cathedral and Alcazar)
- 6 – Personal phone numbers that I’ve used as my primary number for at least a day on study abroad (+44 7598736659 [UK], +44 7404245455 [UK old], +1 3108092668 [USA], a +1 (661) number on Skype, +351 915406195 [Portugal], +34 602695139 [Spain])
- 6 – Football matches (Crystal Palace x2, West Ham, Tottenham, Sporting Lisbon, Arsenal)
- 6 – Airlines flown (United, British Airways, Ryan Air x2, Air New Zealand x2, airberlin, Easy Jet)
- 4 – Essential items forgotten at least once on trip (Earplugs, Razor, Eye mask, Flip flops, headache pills)
- 4 – Countries (UK, Portugal, USA [it counts], Spain)