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Archive for May, 2011

Adiós

Duke in Spain, as a program, is now over for me. I’ve finished all of my homework (which actually began to resemble real homework toward the end) and turned everything in. We’ve had our final say-goodbye dinner, and I’ve begun to pack. In two days’ time I’ll be heading back to America: to my family and to English. I’ll also have be starting a long summer of physics, EMS, and OIT–penance for having taken a semester-long vacation, I suppose.

I’m going to miss Spain. I’ll miss the culture, the language, the food, and the people. I’ll miss my family, who have been nothing but incredible in hosting me (I’m going to try to update this again with a picture of all of us), and I’ll miss Pedro and Roberto, my Spanish buddies. I’ll miss, as my roommate, Caleb, said, the ability to turn Spain and Europe into a carefree playground to roam and simply experience what comes at me. While it has been difficult to be on my own on the other side of the Atlantic, I have grown to love Madrid and to really feel as though I know have a second home. España: te echaré de menos. Algún día nos veremos de nuevo. Hasta pronto, amigo mío.

Thanks to everyone for reading this blog and sharing my memories with me.

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Categories: Language

Svenska Talk

Hey everyone! This is going to be my second to last blog post during my study abroad time. As I never truly caught up after Berlin, I figured I’d start out by talking about my magnificent stay in Sweden. My last will be published directly after this one.

My brother’s roommate, Felix, is a Swedish international student (he can’t help it, he was born that way), and over the years our two families have grown closer to one another. As I was searching for ideas as to where to spend my Spring Break, the thought occurred to me to go visit the beautiful Wibergh family in Stockholm. Unfortunately, Felix was still in the USA as the breaks did not correspond, so that means some day I shall have to go back again :-D. I arrived in Skavsta airport and took the bus to the middle of Stockholm where Felix’s brother, David, picked me up. We went back to the Wibergh residence where I unpacked and joined the family.

All-in-all, my time with the Wibergh family was centered around the premise of me being a member of the family. I took my shoes off at the door, I kept my room presentable, and I carried my dishes to the sink after meals. Similar in some ways to being able to see Felipe G. in Berlin, being able to spend some more time around some familiar faces was truly splendid and valuable.

Felix’s house, I must say, could not be in a prettier location. On the outskirts of the city, the house is situated next to a lake suitable for boating, kayaking and swimming. David and I did go kayaking one day, after we all helped to get the boat and the pier in the water, which was amazing as I haven’t done anything like that since I was in the Cub Scouts. Additionally, there is lots of forest nearby, which served as a treacherous yet beautiful running trail. Staying with the beautiful, albeit woefully incomplete, Wibergh family was as peaceful and relaxing as one could ask for.

I did get to go through the city of Stockholm a bit as well, though not as much as I would have liked given that I had so much homework to do while I was there. While I mention homework, I should say that I can’t believe how much basic orgo concepts I’ve forgotten–a rude realization I made as I tried to help David with his homework. I’ll have to get back in the swing of things when I get back. Anyway, the city was incredibly beautiful–I was told it’s often mentioned among the most beautiful cities in the world. I wasn’t able to get a super thorough tour, both due to my time constraints and the family’s, so again I’ll have to go back to learn more of the history of the city. In the slideshow below, I’ve marked some of the things I did learn in the captions.

Sweden, honestly, was amazing. Not only the place itself, but also the fact that I had the most incredible hosts a person could ask for. A personal thanks to the Wibergh family for hospitably hosting me in their home and treating me as one of their own. Next time, Marie, hopefully I’ll bring the great weather with me again!

P.S. Marie, if you have the pictures of all of us eating dinner together, would you mind sending them to me? Thanks!

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Categories: Language