Strahinja, a participant from the Meet Spain program, sends us his regards from Spain. Read his impressions below.
“I’ve always wanted to visit Spain because of its rich culture and long history. Thanks to the Center for Affirmation and Development, my wish came true, and the girls who work there are of really great support to everyone who wants to “run off abroad for some time”. I am very grateful to them for their hard work, the many tips they gave me, and the frequent calls they made to ask me how I feel about living with the current family. I admit that I was a little nervous before the trip and I was not sure how I will manage when I arrive in Burgos, a city about sixty kilometers away from Madrid where my hosts live. However, when I arrived to Madrid via Frankfurt it turned out that there was no reason to worry at all. The transfer from the airport to Burgos by bus was very pleasant, I waited for my hosts at a cafe and my stay in Spain began…
In general, Spaniards are very friendly to visitors, therefore I felt welcome everywhere from the very beginning. My family accepted me from the first moment, especially the eight-year-old Lucas and the four-year-old Hector, whom I mostly “hang out” with. I became a member of the family and I visited a lot of places with them on weekends. They took me to Sasamon, Lerma and Bilbao, and many other interesting places, such as Sad Hill, where the movie “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” was shot. The boys accepted me as their cousin, I helped the older one write homework, conducted English lessons with him in advance, played with them, took them for a walk and I had no problems with them. Whenever I heard them speak English I felt quite satisfied as I was encouraging them to speak the language. I “stole” short Spanish sentences from them, because I didn’t speak Spanish until I arrived in Burgos.
I met members of my hosts’ extended family, as they took me everywhere with them, along with a lot of family friends. In Sasamon, I hung out with their friends, and I even participated in roasting and peeling peppers for the winter. But I also discovered that they don’t make ‘ajvar’, they freeze the roasted peppers and eat them as a salad during the winter. New Spanish friends showed me the city of Burgos and introduced me to their way of life.
This whole area is rich in cultural and historical heritage. The cathedral in the center of the city is an impressive building that left a strong impact on me. Burgos is famous for the Museum of Human Evolution, where it is possible to see the remains of our ancestors who are more than five million years old. The local museum has a very impressive collection of objects and works from prehistoric to modern times. The city center is very beautiful and every time I stroll through it I notice something new.
I learned a lot of new things, broadened my horizons and made friends. I am especially glad that I “started speaking” Spanish. Coming to Spain turned out to be an extremely good decision. This is definitely the best way to get to know a country and gain unforgettable experiences. They are valuable enough to make you pack your bags again and visit a new place.
I’m already making plans…”