Although the Spanish capital had a lot to offer, I was of course looking forward to the trip that our program had planned to Barcelona for the second weekend. During my time in Barcelona, I was able to learn about a whole different region of Spain, including transportation, cultural differences, and the history of the conflict between the northeastern region and the rest of Spain.
By living abroad in Madrid, Spain for a month, I was able to experience and learn first-hand a number of cultural differences when compared to life in the United States. As a Spanish minor in college, I have had the opportunity to learn about many different cultures in Spanish-speaking countries. However, getting the chance to immerse myself in the culture outside of a classroom setting was a special experience. During my time abroad, I learned about various cultural differences in Spain such as daily life/meal times, social norms, language, and much more!
In 2018, I visited Iceland after taking an 8-week course focused on the history, biology, and culture of Iceland and its people. According to our tour guide, Hrefna, even though most Icelanders speak English, adults don’t generally speak English with each other, only Icelandic. They are very proud of their native tongue, and many are involved in efforts focused on maintaining the language, which is what Icelandic Language Day is all about!