Tapas rejuvenating for study abroad students
It seems like it may have been the “twerk” heard around the world. Even in our state of television purgatory – no cable, no Netflix, no Hulu, not even Pandora – our study abroad group rung in its second week in Seville recounting Miley Cyrus’ foam-finger antics.
If missing a live viewing of MTV’s Video Music Awards didn’t solidify our absence from American society, the start of our classes abroad certainly did. We all seemed to have conveniently forgotten the “study” aspect of studying abroad.
Annoyed and still battling jet lag, we dragged our feet to our various Philosophy and Theology classes.
Fortunately for us, classes were only Monday through Thursday, and they passed by as quickly as we hoped.
Over the course of the week, our guides led a couple of excursions into different landmarks in the city to help us get a better sense of the culture.
replaced those excursions with a cultural assimilation of my own – siesta. I somehow managed to sleep through all the group trips that week. Perhaps my frail body wasn’t ready to adapt just yet.
I promised myself that I’d use my three day weekend to do some real exploring, and I’m glad to say I kept my promise.
Personally, I believe that shopping and eating are the best ways to bond with a city, so naturally that is what my weekend consisted of.
I’d like to say that I found the city center on my own, but honestly it found me. The universal landmark for any hip district is a Starbucks and Seville’s city center has one on just about every corner.
I walked straight past all the American chain restaurants and had no intentions of looking back. I was having cravings–which no Quarter Pounder in the world could satisfy.
My friends and I walked into the first tapas bar we found and it was love at first taste. Truthfully, tapas are sent from God.
The best way I can describe Tapas are appetizer-sized portions of entrees.
What’s even better is that they generally cost less than three euros a plate.
My favorite is a dish called carne en tomate. It’s little beef chunks in a
tomato soup served hot with bread. The first time I had it, I swear my taste
buds did the Cha-Cha Slide.
After eating we headed straight to the shops. I was ecstatic to find that
they had some of my favorite stores like Zara, along with some other equally fine shops that were new to me.
To add to that, there was no shortage of street vendors selling everything from scarves to ukuleles. If you’re lucky, you could snag up a genuine Moroccan
leather wallet for less than 10 euros.
Come nighttime, all roads led to Bilindo, Seville’s local hotspot. We learned the basics in Spanish Clubbing 101 pretty quickly.
First, people don’t dance with each other at all. Secondly, the Spaniards probably know more words to Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky” than you do. Lastly, your night was insignificant if it did not end at Bilindo.
In retrospect, the second week may have started off as a bit of a drag, but it ultimately ended on a high note. God bless tapas for that.