Sonntag, 5. April 2015

Trip to the Beach

On Wednesday we left Seville to go to the beach for three days. My hostfamily owns a house right next to the sea where we would stay. At this time I had already seen dozens of Semana Santa processions and I was glad to get some time off from the boiling and crowded city. We arrived at the beach in the night after a 1,5 h trip and went to bed right after.
The next morning we slept in and went to the beach. We spend a great time laying in the sun and relaxing. Later, we had lunch and made a trip to Portugal which I enjoyed a lot.
On friday, we started the day as lazy as on thursday and hung around the house studying. In the evening, we were invited to a family dinner and watched Semana Santa processions from the balcony of the house in which we stayed. I met many nice people and had a very good time.
On saturday, the day of my birthday, we left early in the morning to head back to Seville.

Montag, 30. März 2015

Semana Santa

Yesterday, I got for the first time an idea of what "mucha gente" in Seville means. The entire city was full of people in dresses, suits and coats, following and performing the Semana Santa processions.
It was Domingo de Ramos, the official first day and start of the holy week. In the morning, the first thing people do is going to church. At the entrance visitors are given a ribbon to put on the jacket to show they were at that particular church. Inside, they receive a branch that they can wear with the jacket or put next to the entrance of their homes for good luck.
my host-brother Andres and me during lunch with his family
Then, the people in Seville get together with their families to have lunch and spend time together.

Around early noon, the processions start.
Those processions consist of many members. For exapmle there are those, wearing a coat with a peaked top, in the color of the "brotherhood" they belong to. Those brotherhoods are related to the churches in the districts of Seville. Many of those nazarenos are walking barefoot for hours to honor christ. Others have comitted to carry a wooden cross during the entire procession. Then there are those, who carry very heavy, antique wooden sculpures through the streets that represent religious symbols.
a wooden scultpure, carried by men
Often those processions consist of hundreds of members, and continue until the morning of the following day. Sometimes they are accompanied by marching bands. Children can ask the nazarenos for candy and will sometimes receive sweets or little pictures of the figures, that they then carry in their wallets. It is crazy, how many people are on the streets watching these events. At some moments, we stand right in the middle of a big square and couldn't move at all. Still, the Semana Santa processions are a very interesting and faszinating thing to watch, for which Seville is known all over the world.

Dienstag, 24. März 2015

First Days in Seville

View from the Cathedral downtown
By tonight, the second day of my stay in Seville is going to be over. I've already seen a lot in this time and I have made the aquaintance of many great and interesting people. On Monday, the day after I arrived in Seville, I left the home of my host family at 9:30 am to follow a map to the school in which the coordinator of my exchange, Daniel Orosco, was already waiting for me. He then showed me the way through the city to the primary school in which I would be about to intern. From the moment of my arrival in the school everyone was very welcoming and kind to me and I felt very pleased. Dagmar, a german teaching assistant at the school, which is teaching most classes bilingual in Spanish and German, showed me around, introduced me to the stuff and explained to me which tasks I would be doing in the following four weeks.
The school in which I intern
Since then, I got to know approximalty 100 children from all ages between 4 and 12 and assisted the teachers in issues of pronounciation and vocabulary of the German language. I also helped doing an inventory and preparing worksheets for class. In the afternoons, my host-brother Andres has showed me around the beautiful city of Seville and I already got to know many sights. Today, in fact, I went up the tower of the biggest gothic catherdral in the world.
Sometimes there are some difficulties following up on everything that's been said, because the accent in the southern region of  Spain is difficult to unterstand. For example, people simply avoid the use of the character 's' in most words.  Therefore 'pues' becomes 'pue' and 'adios' 'adio'. Also, people are talking really fast. Still though, my spanish has already imroved remarkebly during those days, since I almost only speek spanish to my host family and most teachers at school.
I'm very much looking forward to many more days to come!

Montag, 23. März 2015

Reunion in Madrid

Today, I had the pleasure to meet up with Pablo, who I had spend an entire year living with in Texas. I took the airplain from Dusseldorf in the late morning and arrived at Madrid around 2 pm. From the airport I took line 8 to the station "nuestras ministerias" where I met Pablo. We spend a great day having lunch, doing sightseeing and going to the Casino of Madrid. I was very happy to get to see Pablo again and we agreed to repeat this soon again. I left Madrid around 10 pm and finally arrived in Madrid at 11.20 pm, where my host faimily welcomed me warmly at the airport. I fell asleep shortly after I've had a late "midnight dinner".

Samstag, 21. März 2015


Tomorrow my journey is going to start! Around 12.00 am I'm departing from Düsseldorf Airport. The first stop of the travel is Madrid. I'm eventually getting to visit my friend Pablo Cebral, who I have spend a year living with as a host-brother in Austin, Texas during my exchange-year in 2012/2013.