Hello! My name is Elizabeth Edmunds and I am a sophomore from Lynchburg, VA currently studying abroad in Seville, Spain with ISA at the Universidad de Sevilla. I am studying Elementary Education and Spanish, so I have always known I wanted to study abroad in Spain. Finding the city was more of a decision, but I also loved the idea of a medium sized city, so I found Seville. Once I figured out where, I had to pick what program. I chose my program based on the classes I needed, excursion included, and price. I am studying Spanish here, so I am taking five Spanish classes with the goal to improve my language as much as possible. I had been lucky enough to have visited Spain before I embarked on this journey, so I knew some things to expect, like how in Spain they eat their meals much later then I was used too.
What a cool thing I get to do. Living in another country is something that not a lot of people have the option to do. Studying abroad is amazing because you get to experience a new place and learn as much outside of the classroom as you do in it. I love how specific and tailored my classes are to this city. Even though I have only been here two weeks, I can already see growth in myself. There is no better way to become truly independent then to have no other option. I have been spending a lot more time alone, but not in a sad way, in the way that I have been present and taking control of my situation. When I first got to this city, I was terrified. It is one thing to move to a new city, but a new city in a new country where you only know about 70% of the language is an adjustment to say the least. I had to get over this fear and I did that by walking around and learning the city. I knew that if I was confident of where I was going, I would feel a lot better and it worked. Every other day I have been exploring something new and just wondering around the area. It is freeing to not have anyone else with you, so you can go exactly at the pace you want.
All of my wondering has taken me all over the city, but I keep coming back to one place. As of this moment, my new favorite place is the Plaza de España. I know what a cliché choice, right? Well I like to think it is popular for the same reason that I love it; it is the feeling you get when you are there. As I sit, thinking, I can’t help but have a happy heart. Being in the Plaza makes me know feel like I can do anything. Like someone designed and built this place, they dreamed it into being, so why can’t I do the same with my dreams? Well, I can. The plaza makes this whole experience seem real and makes me feel grateful for this journey every time I sit in it. It makes me think about a lot of things and have some clarity. So, go out and find a place that is as special in your city! It doesn’t have to be some big monument; it could be the little café a block away or the bench in front of the orange tree. Remember it is not the place, it is the feeling it gives you!