Suntan and Spanish in Malaga!
I arrived in Malaga in September, full of expectation, a bit unsure of my high school Spanish but with an eagerness to learn much more… and within just a month of my arrival, I truly felt like a resident of Malaga, part of the scenery, one of the locals… even though I’d only been there for a few weeks!
My apartment was lovely, and just a minute’s walk from both beach and school! I chose a shared apartment, and was happy to find out that I was living with girls from Italy, and Sweden, who also happened to be in my class.
Our Spanish classes at the school were small, always fewer than 10 in each group (normally just 7 or 8 ), and we all felt comfortable enough to make mistakes and help each other learn as much as we possibly could. My teachers were patient, and created interactive lessons for us to comprehend. We all got to practice speaking as much as we could in class, whether reading or telling our own stories. I think I answered the question, “What did you do yesterday?” about a million times! But, over time, the questions got harder, of course, and the answers came even more naturally. All of us students felt like we truly accomplished something big. It was great to go into a class with other students who were just beginning, and be able to have conversations in Spanish at the end of it!
I spent my mornings in my Spanish class, my afternoons sun tanning on the beach and studying with my classmates… and my nights at fish restaurants, eating fried fish, and drinking sangria outside by an open fire. All the while I was hearing Spanish, thinking Spanish, seeing Spanish, and most of all, speaking Spanish. I could do all of this quicker than I expected, and was pretty proud of myself.
I’ll never forget the sounds of salsa or flamenco; the background music to my trip. I will also never forget my first or last class in Spain, and how much I truly learned throughout my trip. …I’ll go back as soon as I can….I just wish it could be tomorrow!