“Typical” Days Abroad by Allison Carter

A typical weekday in Lisbon, Portugal consisted of school, work, and exploration. I woke up every day around 7:30 AM in order to get ready for class. I was usually downstairs at our hotel’s
complimentary breakfast cafe around 8:00 AM for a meal of fruit, toast, beans, coffee, and pastries. Around 8:50 AM, I would start the five minute walk from our hotel to the Universidade
NOVA de Lisboa, where our classes were held. While in Portugal, I was able to take HONS 390 Evidence Based Medicine with Dr. Kate Pfile and completed my Honors Immersed project with Dr. Morgan Hughey. Dr. Hughey usually spoke with all 10 of the students for about an hour on Monday mornings to recap the previous week, go over what was to be completed in the
upcoming week, help with data analysis, and answer any questions that we would have for her. Dr. Pfile then taught a smaller class of just five students, myself included, until about 1:00 PM. During our short lunch break, I often found myself going across the street to Huang He, a Chinese restaurant that was fairly cheap, in order to get fried rice and egg rolls. The egg rolls
were shaped like stuffed pancakes instead of the eggroll shape that I was used to receiving in the US which I thought was interesting. In the afternoons, I would reconvene with my professors for a cultural activity or lesson. These included a tour of architecture influenced by the Portuguese dictator Salazar, a walking tour of the city, a bike tour along the water, a visit to the Intervention on Addictive Behaviors and Dependencies (SICAD) office, a lecture on the Portuguese national healthcare system, a traditional Portuguese cooking class, and a visit to a Commission for the Dissuasion of Drug Addiction (CDT) office. These cultural activities allowed me to learn more about Portuguese culture and the way that the healthcare system is operated. I was usually done with these activities by 5:00 PM, so me and some of the other students would go to dinner, or my partner for my research project and I would audit a park in Lisbon for data collection. I would then return to my hotel and work on homework or watch a TV show. On the weekends, I would audit parks, go downtown, visit markets, take boat tours of the river, go to the aquarium, celebrate local holidays with the locals, and find new places to eat and shop. One weekend, I even traveled to Porto for a mini-vacation in the middle of my study abroad trip. No two days in Portugal were the same, and I tried to see as much of the city in four weeks as possible. This included lots of public transportation, wandering around, and going into restaurants with no plan. A “typical day” had some sort of plan to start with, but I never knew where the day would end!

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