Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Adeu Barcelona!

By Josh Zipin

Hello Davidson family. My semester in Barcelona is coming to a close and this will be my final blog entry as I will be flying out back to the US of A this Thursday. The semester has flown by and I can’t believe my time is up here.

The last month has been very full with visits from Wildcat star athletes and friends from home. Showing friends the city has really allowed me to get to know the city much better. At the beginning of the semester I felt a little bit lost, not knowing how to get to places, especially with any kind of punctuality. But I’ve evolved into a real tour guide here, with walking and metro routes of the city that I’m comfortable with. It’s different than Davidson or my hometown of Silver Spring, Maryland, because I go so many places by foot so often. I feel almost as if I know my way around this city better than either American ones.

The weather has been incredible here for the last month, and one of my favorite activities during that time has been playing ping pong outside in the Ciutadella park. It’s a huge park, but in the corner of one of its many entrances there are 6 outdoor tables lined up. It has actually been a great way to meet local Catalans, just by goofing around and playing small, very informal tournaments. Small things like ping pong helped me feel much more connected to the city and its people.

It is a bit bittersweet because I feel so comfortable here now, but I am so excited to get home and get back to Davidson. I’ve developed a genuine affection for everything Barcelona, and it is almost like I am a real citizen now. I couldn’t be happier with my decision to study abroad, and especially choosing to study here. My Spanish has reached a level of fluency I did not anticipate reaching and I have become much more independent here. I’ve also experienced some completely new cultures, and of course, been privileged to be inundated in a soccer-crazy environment, home to the best team in the world, FC Barcelona.

I just finished my last exam of the semester, and am now officially a Davidson senior. That is really weird to think about. My flight is scheduled for Thursday morning but knowing this city, there are probably a few twists and turns left for me before I leave. It’s been great connecting with people at home through this blog and I hope everyone has enjoyed it as much as I have. Make sure to catch the Barca Champions League game today! Visc a Barca y Visc a Catalunya!



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