Thursday, February 9, 2012

Don Quijote

Today, I woke up and took a shower. I taught my host siblings how to knit on Sunday, and when I got out of the shower they were on their lunch break from school and Nora was working on her knitting. She is only seven years old, but she learned very quickly and is doing a great job. I am feeling much closer with my host family each day and am always grateful that I was placed with such wonderful people.

After I spent some time with my siblings I went to Farggi, which is the same place I went on Tuesday. It is one of my favorite places to go for lunch. I ordered a ham and cheese croissant, cafe con leche, and ice cream. The ice cream was Nutella flavored, and I still support my statement that they have the best ice cream in the world.

I headed over to the CIEE building when I was done eating. I wore my new coat today and when I walked in Danni and Kristi both complimented it. That is one of the best feelings in the world: wearing something that you really love and having people tell you they like it. I spent some time in the computer lab doing the reading for my Don Quijote class. Today I actually decided that this is the coolest class that I have ever taken. Call me crazy, but I have an obsession with 16th century Spanish history. I am always fascinated by the conflict between the jews, muslims, and christians of the time. One thing that particularly interested me was learning about a man named Lopez de Hoyos. He was a professor at the University of Madrid but was banned from teaching because he followed Erasmus (a Protestant) and did not agree with the Catholic practices of the time. Hoyos held classes for small groups of students in order to make a living, and Cervantes was lucky enough to have him as a professor. If Hoyos has not been expelled from the University, Cervantes would have probably never had him. Our professor talked to us about her own personal experience as a college student. She went to school during the Franco dictatorship. This was another period when many professors were banned from teaching. My professor took a class in Greek which was taught by a woman who was banned from teaching in the universities. This woman was very talented, but did not share political beliefs with the government at the time. My professor said that good professors teach subjects, but great professors teach about life. She said that her Greek professor said "Do not obey anything that you do not completely believe in." I think that this is a good lesson for everyone because it encourages people to question what they stand for and to refuse to accept things that they do not agree with. In other words, if everyone thought like this, I wonder if people like Franco would ever come to power.

Dinner was very fun tonight. We talked about what happens when you loose a tooth in Spain and what Halloween in the United States is like. We had rice with calamari and shrimp, and it was delicious just like always.

Anyways, I am about to go to a bar with some friends. I am leaving for Valencia in the morning.

My siblings and I playing Monopoly a few nights ago.

My lunch today.


Beautiful view of one of the plazas

Awesome view of the Cathedral

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