Week 2 - Ferias, Fiestas, y Futbol
So since I left off it has been about a week.My classes have been going well.The grammar class I could really care less about but it is nice to have while over here.It is a lot easier to understand when you can/have to use it every day.This class has helped me improve my Spanish which has been helpful.My other class is "Spain and its role in the European Union".I really enjoy this class.My professor is the head of the program and she is hilarious.My host mom describes her as a "Barbie" and that is pretty much what she looks like.She has so much energy and has done great with the class.We are learning the basics of the European Union but we also go on an excursion each class around town so she can show us physically how it all started because there is so much history around here.
On Monday, pretty much the whole group went out at night.That was a lot of fun.There have been concerts all week so we met up at the concert.It was nice because it was a chance for a bunch of us to get to know each other.It is really different here with the night schedule.People start going out about 10/11 at night and stay out all night.If you go home at like2 in the morning here, it is considered early which is the exact opposite in the states.I have met so many new people that are so nice.We have a great time when we are out doing stuff.It is too bad that after this most of us will go our separate ways to different ends of the country.On Tuesday, it was the official day of Saint John the Baptist, so we didn't have school.I went downtown early with my host family and watched the parade.It was a small parade of a typical Spanish marching band and about 15 feet tall paper mache dolls representing the story.This can be seen in the Festival album.It was really cool to see but also really different.Wednesday was a pretty relaxed day.There really wasn't anything too exciting.
Thursday was the semi-finals game of EuroCup 2008.That was all we were worried about that day.Spain was playing Russia and it is a huge deal here.Before going to the game, I went to the park with my host family and there was a little fair/carnival there.There were jumpy houses and clowns.The clowns were really interesting.They were on stilt like things and were really animated.It was cool to see.I have a video of them on the site.After that, I went down to the Plaza Mayor.On our way there, we stopped at a store and got a "Espana" scarf because I didn't have anything red or gold and that was necessary for the game.We got to the Plaza Mayor where there were a huge amount of people and a large screen that had the game playing on it.Behind the screen was the cathedral which was a gorgeous sight at night.There was one thing that got in our way and that was that we had "intercambios" that night.That is where we were grouped up with a Spainard that is studying English so we can each work on our respective languages.We were able to get back in time for the second half.Spain scored its first goal in the second half and I cannot describe the madness that went on.We were right by the crazy fans and it is the craziest thing I have seen.To show you the madness I am going to post a video or two showing how they reacted when Spain scored.It was so much fun though.I thought I was going to go deaf because there were fireworks going off right by me.We finally realized to run when we saw other people running.Also, people were throwing drinks in the air.That is why in the pictures we are all wet and sticky.
Friday was our first excursion.First we went to a vineyard and winery.We saw how the wine was made and then we went wine tasting.It was fun and I enjoyed it.We were able to taste the differences between the wine fermented normally and that fermented in a barrel.From there went to the town of Coca where we saw our first castle.The castles here we meant for fortresses not necessarily for decoration.We walked all through the castle and it was interesting.My favorite part was called "The room of secrets".It was amazingly engineered.There were eight parts of the room where one person stood.If you talked into the wall you could hear the person on the other side.It was like an old fashioned phone system.If one person stood in the middle and said something it would come back ten-fold.It was crazy.We then drove to another town outside of Segovia called Cuellar.We had time for lunch and a siesta then saw the church there.This one was more interesting to me but that is just one opinion.It is now a school where people live in.From there we went to the church next door that was set up for a "mudejar" exhibition.I don't know the word in English but mudejar is a type of art when Muslims do the art for Christians.It was a very nice presentation that described it fully.I found it very informational and well done.Overall it was a very fun first excursion and I can't wait to see what the next one brings.
So on Sunday as many should know, Spain won the EuroCup for the first time since 1964 and the second time in history.It was super exciting and the city went crazy.It was also a holiday so there were fireworks as well.The town was loud all night and it was really hard to sleep but it was all worth it.Tha game was a blast to watch and I really wish we had something like that in the states.
So that has been my week, busy I know but it has been great.One week down, five to go.