After a few weeks of finally settling into the city of history, culture, arts, nightlife, food and much more; Thessaloniki, Greece, has become my stay for these 37 days abroad. Choosing a city (the second largest in Greece), that is not too common among Americans for studying abroad, was a place I knew was going to be very different. For example, dinnertime does not start until at least 9 p.m., businesses close from 3 to 5 p.m. for afternoon nap time, a large number of Greeks are avid smokers and the surprising appreciation from locals when attempting to speak Greek. The differences, however, have shown me that there is much excitement that can be found from being immersed in unfamiliar places. Places that hold so much learning and discovery.
So it has been three weeks since I've gotten home and I already miss Florence. I love being home but working every day and paying off my debts to my parents hasn't been all that much fun. However, I have really missed my family and friends and was lucky enough to see them all when I got home. It's nice knowing that everyone around me speaks English again, even though I'm not completely used to not hearing my favorite Italian word, "ciao," every five minutes.
I may be coming off as repetitive by saying this past week was the best week of my life, but it absolutely was. But I won't start there. First off, the weekend of the 7th and 8th of March I went to Barcelona, Spain for the famous Abroadfest. Unfortunately, I was unable to get into Abroadfest because I wasn't wearing the "proper shoes," but Barcelona was still amazing. The city is humongous and the scenery right by the ocean was jaw breaking. We got to go all the way up to the top of a hill which overlooked all of Barcelona, including the famous Barcelona soccer stadium. We got to see famous tourist attractions such as the Sagrada Familia which is the largest cathedral I have ever seen. It began construction in 1882 and still to this day has not been completed. Other famous attractions we got to see were the Barcelona Cathedral, Parc de la Ciutadella, Placa d'Espanya, Torre Agbar, and the Arc de Triomf. All in all it was an amazing trip and definitely worth seeing.