It feels like yesterday that I vacated my apartment in Getafe, Madrid. It still did not hit me that I was leaving Spain, until I said ADIOS to the lady at the British Airways check in counter at T4 Madrid Barajas International Airport. A year of flashbacks followed that, where the emotional departure commenced.It has been a couple of weeks since I have returned home, and although it has taken time to adjust, the memories of Spain are still fresh in the head. I can proudly say that I have established a connection with Spain, with many of my new amigos demanding I return in the near future especially when I still have some regions to explore. Knowing I now have friends from around the world also shows a successful year and I would not have had the amazing year I would have had without them. My choices in January proved successful as well, so I was able to end on a high note.
Saying Hasta Luego….
Being a student of Aston University, I was fortunate to have many options for my 3rd year, and I’m 100% certain study abroad was the best decision I made. Although it was amazing, it was not a year to doss around, it required hard work, like every stage in life. Once you see your accomplishments, you soon forget the hurdles you came across and feel proud of yourself.
There were times were I may have envied work placements because of the perks they obtained from their work placement, even some bragging was noticable, especially when I was studying for midterms, but at the end of the day I was grateful for the opportunity because when else am I going to have the opportunity to study abroad, Aqui o Nunca. Any option that makes you change for the better is the perfect choice, whether it is home or away, work or study. I had the opportunity to develop my soft skills such as learning Spanish which too date I am still practicing, it is one skill I am not prepared to lose.
This experience also allowed me to travel to places I would have never have thought of visiting, which I am grateful for. I was able to add Granada to the list, in the future I would like to visit North of Spain and Barcelona.
Spain has a large Latino population, and they have contributed to the social influence in Spain. I find this interesting, and thanks to this experience, it has lead to my ambition to visit Latin America in the near future. I now LOVE the music as well, so its questionable to say i am turning into a wannabe Latino/Hispanic/Espanol, watch out family and friends 😉
I could go on and on and on, but we would be here all year, so we will keep this short now…..
My advice for people who are about to embark a journey similar to myself:
- Take some home comforts with you
- Do as much as you can, balance your life
- Find out if your area has transport discounts (Madrid was amazing 20 euros a month for public transport , yes be jealous)
- Do as much research as you can prior to arrival in your destination
- Stay Safe, be humble, have fun, make memories.
*Prepares Acceptance Award* To sum up this year, a study placement is just not about studying, its about leaving your comfort zone and making an adventure of new discovering , becoming a stronger person, establishing new connections, developing your personality, being more spontaneous and adapting to change. I definitely gained from this experience, and I have my family, friends, the La Cuidad de Madrid, Aston University and Universidad Carlos Tercero de Madrid to thank for this experience. I would also like to thank my blog readers for encouragement and being interested in my adventure.