So I still have yet to finish writing about the rest of my trip abroad but I got a little side tracked towards the end of it. We were super overwhelmed with trying to focus on our final exams while still enjoying our last few days in such a beautiful city. My one complaint about the program was the fact that our finals literally occurred on our last days. We didn’t have time to say goodbye to everyone, pack, spend time with our madre, bask in the great ambi of Sevilla and slowly try to accept the fact that we could no longer call it home. Instead we were crammed inside studying for exams that we had 0% interest in taking. And the worst part was that these finals were actually crucial in our passing the classes (which was wholly the reason we were in Spain to begin with).
Leaving Sevilla made it to my top 5 heartbreakers. (The list also includes the day I found out my mom was Santa, the moment I realized I could never be best friends with Bear (Bear in the Big Blue House) because he wasn’t real, your typical boy drama heartbreaks, the day the doctor told me I was 5’ 2” and probably done growing, etc etc). Anyway back to the seriousness.
Ray and I were devastated that we had to leave Sevilla, especially because that meant we were leaving Maribel back on her own. It always made me nervous that she lived alone at her age. She drove us both to our departing destinations- Ray to the airport and me to the train station. Both drop-offs left me in tears but more-so an hour after Maribel drove away, as I was sitting in the train station by myself. I think I was still in shock when I said my last goodbyes, but the fact that I heard Maribel say “Te quiero” through tears as she hugged me hit me hard after the fact. I can undoubtedly say Maribel was a huge part of what made my trip the absolute best it could’ve been. She was kind, caring, thoughtful, helpful, and admirable. A beautiful woman inside and out. I’ll miss her dearly and can only hope to soon return to Sevilla and catch up with my other madre.
|Dancing the Sevillana flamenco dance at Feria with Maribel|
Which leads me to say, I will be back to Sevilla in my lifetime. I couldn’t have chosen a better place to study the Spanish language. It is the most culturally dense city I have ever visited and I will forever be in love with it. The air, the people, the food, everything breathes Sevillan culture. The city’s symbol “No8Do” short for “No Me Ha Dejado” (It has not left me) is painted all over for a reason. Honestly I’m tearing up as I write this because it makes it seem so far away.
I miss the Rio and everything that surrounded it- my runs along it, crossing it on my walk to class everyday, the hot afternoons where we drank CruzCampos next to it amidst the Spaniards. I miss having a schedule that was developed more-so on where and when we were going to “tomar unos tintos de verano” (go out for a glass of tinto) than anything else. I miss tapas. I miss socializing over tapas. I miss speaking Spanish. I miss Tomas, my favorite bartender that just so happened to resemble Jude Law, my favorite actor and future husband. I miss living with Ray (who is now in Malawi teaching English!!). I miss being in a city that was so big but felt so easy to navigate. I miss the vibrancy and the feeling of liveliness while simply walking the streets. I could go on forever but it’s starting to hurt my heart.
|Mi amor, Tomas|
I know I am so blessed to have experienced such a beautiful place and I will be forever grateful to everyone who was a part of it- from my parents for allowing me to travel, to Maribel for taking the best care of me and Ray, to my professors (and all Sevillanos) for forcing me to understand Spanish spoken at 3000 words per second, to the program directors for being so encouraging and helpful all the time, to Ray for dealing with me and my many issues, to the great group of friends made along the way.
Sevilla, No Me Ha Dejado <3 <3