Hey everyone! So it has been awhile since I have updated! This past week was one of our spring breaks – “Semana Santa” which is the holy week here in Sevilla. Before I get ahead of myself and talk about Semana Santa, Friday the 15th I had a visit to Cota de Donana in the Huelva Province. It is one of the biggest national parks in Spain. We took jeeps through the sand dunes and beach! It was cool – except we didn’t see many animals…we saw a dead turtle, a wild pig and the oh so exotic – deer. Anyways, it was cool to see all the sand dunes and we saw parades of people on horses, drinking and making their way to a nearby city. Apparently, its a tradition to make a “pilgramage” on the weekends to this city.
After this fieldtrip on Friday, Andy came to visit me on Saturday!!! We had a lot of fun! For most of the week we stayed in Sevilla – I was able to show him around the city a lot and show him where I was living for 5 months! We ran into many processions while we were in Sevilla for the semana santa celebration. Basically there were a bunch of people dressed up like the Klu Klux Klan and they marched slowly through the streets and at the end of the processions there was a giant float with candles, figurines, etc. on it. There were at least 5 processions a day and they would usually take a couple hours….therefore, it was very frustrating to get around in the downtown area because soooo many people were crowding around to see the processions. At some points you couldn’t even move anywhere! One night when we were trying to get back to our hostel there was a huge processions right outside our hostel – the big float was entering the door to the church. Apparently this is one of the most important ceremonies so it literally took forever. We stood in the crowd for about two hours then we started to get frustrated because we just wanted to get back to the hostel! Therefore, we decided to march in the procession to get into our hostel – it worked!
Another highlight of our time in Sevilla was when Andy came over to my Senor and Senora’s house for lunch! Andy doesn’t really speak any Spanish so it was funny to bring him over! Overall he could basically understand what they were trying to say to him, but I had to act as the translator to tell them what he wanted to say! I think they got a kick out of him – not only was my senor and senora there, but their son, daughter, son-in-law and the grandkids – it was a full house! My Senor cooked us an excellent meal though!
After a couple days in Sevilla, we took a bus to Marbella, Spain. Marbella is along the southern coast of Spain on the Medeterreanen Sea – along the Costa del Sol. It is a very ritzy city – all the rich British people vacation there. We had a ton of fun here though – our hostel was a 5 minute walk to the beach (although it rained two of the three days we were there!) Marbella is right on the beach too with gorgeous mountains in the background! Since it was raining, we went to Puerta Banus – the even more ritzy part of Marbella and walked around. We saw the huge marina of Marbella – where all the rich people park their expensive yachts! We ended up getting ice cream, sitting down and watching all the fancy cars and people go down the street. On Friday the 21st we headed back to Sevilla – our bus ride was really cool – it winded through the mountains and we were able to see some really neat views!
After getting back to Sevilla – Andy and I had to figure out what we were going to do all night since we were homeless all night (there were no hostels available since everyone was in town visiting for Semana Santa and Andy’s flight left pretty early in the morning on Saturday). This was an adventure!! We ended up watching flamenco at a really neat Spanish Bar – La Carboneria – for a long time! We then enjoyed the nightlife (there were so many people out and about!!) and ended up making it through the entire night! We finished off our homeless night with churros dipped in hot chocolate before heading to the airport! The week flew by, but we had an amazing time!
After a week off from school, I only have a three day week of class this week because I am leaving on Thursday morning for Morroco, Africa!! The program I came with is sponsoring a trip for us – it should be very interesting to see! I will update after my safari to Africa 🙂
Posted from Spain:
posted Tuesday March 2008