Some of my most cherished memories of living abroad have been when friends and loved ones have come to visit me in Spain. It’s comforting to have a bit of home here, even if just for a few days. It’s also great to see Spain with fresh eyes again, to show people around, give entertaining tidbits about the country and culture, as well as a peek into the lifestyle I lead here…
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One of the first visits I’ve gotten since returning to Spain was my Dad. He flew over as soon as I was done with classes (I was completing an M.A. program at the time), and his arrival provided the perfect excuse for a much-needed getaway before embarking on my dissertation.
We traveled to Granada, one of my favorite cities, and where I would end up living only a month later. We then hopped on a bus to Seville, where I first fell in love with Spain back in 2007. We ventured to Valencia, and finally to Barcelona. Those were the best days I could have ever had traveling alongside my father!
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This year, one of my old college roommates came to visit from Israel with her boyfriend. I had highly recommended Seville to them, where they ended up getting spontaneously engaged! They bought a beautiful engagement band at a local jewelry shop in Seville, and soon after hopped on a bus to meet me in Granada and share the wonderful news. After getting our excited giddiness under control, we caught up on everything: past travels; mutual friends; how our transitions abroad have allowed us to see things in a different light and have changed us for the better; and how far we’ve come along since we roomed together six long summers ago.
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I’ve recently met Lauren from Roaming the World, who’s lived and worked in Almería for the past year. The friendship was instant, and maybe living abroad is cause for stronger connections, but we somehow felt we had known each other for years. Also a native Californian, Lauren would occasionally stay the weekend, and we could spend hours talking – with only food and exhaustion to occasionally shut us up. I look forward to more conversations with Lauren in the future – wherever in the wide world that may be!
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Jamie was the first friend I made at university – we lived in the same dorm, were co-workers in the Residence Halls, and worked together to put on events for RHA (student council). Our first summer in college she met George, and a few years later we all decided to rent an apartment together for our final year of college, which turned out to be quite the year as Jamie and George got engaged and moved across the country, and I broke up with my college boyfriend and moved to another country. :) Naturally, the times we’ve been able to see each other since have been few and far between, but it’s like old times again when we do get together.
A huge, enormous thank you to all of my wonderful visitors for bringing me pieces of home, and for all of the great memories we’ve made in Spain! :)