Year Abroad / The 6 month mark

It’s been over 6 months now since I hopped on that plane to Zaragoza and in some respects I honestly can’t believe how quickly the time has gone! I’m almost halfway through my second semester here, Jack is visiting next week and I’m going home for Easter the week after. Perhaps time really does fly when you’re having fun…

And that’s something I want to emphasise. This semester has been far more positive a semester, minus the first month of exams anyhow. In particular, I’ve really been throwing myself into my writing – I don’t think I’ve ever written so much, or as often, as I have while I’ve been in Spain. It keeps me busy and I’ve realised, with a little help from my friend Niall, that perhaps my niche is getting angry and striking while the iron is hot; just this month I’ve ranted about Emma Watson and feminism, Stormzy and mental health, and George Osborne being made Evening Standard editor. I guess you can’t really take the girl out of the UK, can you? I also have some really great news: during my final year of university I will be a deputy editor of my student newspaper, Redbrick! I’m so excited to be part of such a great committee running what I would argue is the best student newspaper, and it’s something I’m really looking forward to. Thank you to everyone reading who voted, I am so grateful.

However, I must stress I have been keeping busy this semester in general, not just with my writing. There have been a lot of new people arrive in Zaz for a new semester, and I really feel like the friendships I made last semester have become much stronger. A few weeks ago, a few of the girls and I went on a small trip to Huesca, a town in Aragon about an hour away from us. Whilst there we explored the little town and paid for a guided tour that, while only really consisting of religious buildings, the town hall and a museum, was really informative and meant we could practice our Spanish. We had a lovely long lunch and made friends with two very odd, very hungover basketball players from Bosnia and the US, before exploring in the park with ice cream and frozen yoghurt. Sometimes all you need while you’re away is a day or two off to forget all the stresses of Spanish university life and to catch up with your friends, and it was one of the most fun days I’ve had here.

A lovely sunny day in Huesca, Aragón

I’ve also been making lots of plans! In less than a week, Jack is coming to visit Zaragoza. He’s not been here since September when I first got here myself so it’ll be nice to show him the city properly now I actually know where I’m going and where things are. The basilica tower and lots of tapas and beer are a must, that’s for sure. In April I’m also jetting off to Milan, which I am so excited for I could dance (though I won’t, because that’s not something anyone should see unless drunk and therefore unable to remember it). I studied Italian for two years at sixth form but this trip will be my first to Italy and I’ll be meeting up with my bestie, Harriet. It will be only the second time I’ll have seen her in an entire year. YEAR. It’s going to be the best – I better start brushing up on my Italian and see what I can remember…

In the next month I’ll be reunited with some of my faves!

In terms of me and how I’m getting on, I’m alright. I was very brave this semester and registered with the doctor, something I was initially terrified of, and have even found myself in the A&E department without panicking (too much, anyway). I am absolutely fine, there’s nothing to worry about, but I am very proud of myself because going to the doctor freaks me out back in England sometimes. Pat on the back for me. I’ve also spent the last three weeks studying an intensive language course, making some wonderful new friends from Germany, Italy, Poland, Luxembourg, Croatia and China in the process. It has made me want to travel everywhere and anywhere!

I think I should stop the waffling now or we could be here for a long while. I hope everyone back home is doing well and that all my friends on their years abroad are also having a great time – those 9am language seminars are looming ever closer! (Even the thought of them hurts).

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Did you even go to Huesca if you didn’t get a group photo outside the local museum?

Sorry it’s been a while since my last proper update but I’m sure I’ll write some more for the blog after Easter. Hasta la próxima vez, cariños!

Make sure to follow me on Twitter and Instagram to keep up with my year abroad.

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