Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Spanish Class

Yes, I am taking a Spanish class here. And I know you’re all probably laughing and thinking, “Britt can’t learn Spanish!” and I'm starting to think the same thing….it is so hard! But I go to class from 10:45 to 12:45 Monday through Friday and I am actually learning a lot. There are about 13 people in our class and it is extremely diverse. There are 4 of us from the States, 4 from Germany, and 1 of each from Italy, Indonesia, Great Britain, India, and I can’t remember the other one. Pretty crazy huh! The craziest thing about the class is that IT IS ALL IN SPANISH! Yup, every word! Our teacher, Fran, “claims” not to know any other language so we all have to speak in Spanish the whole time. When you don’t know any Spanish at all, that can be pretty difficult! I am learning a lot but I get lost sometimes too. I'm not very good at pronouncing the words here and I don’t know why! When I was taking French, it was a lot easier to pronounce things compared to Spanish. But hopefully I’ll keep catching on and studying and be able to learn it! It definitely is an experience sitting in that class though I can’t help but laugh all the time. Brie and I have also made quite a few friends so that’s fun! Stefie is from Germany and Ghia is from Indonesia and it’s fun to get to know them.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

My New Family!!!

I absolutely love my family here in Madrid. I was very nervous to come here and live with people I don’t know but it has been so fun! My Spanish mom, Ester, is very very nice and super cool. She speaks English perfectly so its fun to talk to her about everything. Her husband Pedro is also very nice even though I haven’t been around him much because he works until late. Alejandra (Alex) is the youngest and she is 5. She has more energy than any other little girl I’ve ever known! She is also extremely smart. She knows English very well because she is in an English school in Arturo Soria (our area of Madrid) and takes classes in both Spanish and English. She goes to school from 9 until 5 everyday! I honestly don’t know how the teachers keep her attention so long. I can’t even control her for an hour! But she is really sweet and I have a lot of fun with her. Jorge is the middle child, and he is 10 years old. He is also extremely smart and goes to an English school as well. He is the biggest sweetheart ever, I just love him! At dinner, he helps me with my Spanish and is very good at not laughing at me when I know I sound totally ridiculous. That boy never stops talking and is always telling me stories about his family or people at school and it takes us forever to get any of his homework done but hey it makes it fun for me! Pedro is the oldest and he is 12. Pedro is a slower learner but again he is such a sweet little boy. He goes to a normal Spanish school and takes an English class there but doesn’t learn very much so he’s the one I mainly work with. We work on the basics like sentence structure and vocabulary so I have a lesson book and go through it with him everyday.They also have a housekeeper, Gladys, who doesn’t speak or understand English at all so that’s interesting! But she wants me to speak to her in English so that she can learn so we will see how that goes! I wish I could speak to her in Spanish though because I desperately need to improve in that area but I'm supposed to speak English 24/7 with my family so its hard to get practice in. So I designated dinner to be my time to practice my Spanish so hopefully that will help me! Oh ya, I forgot Timmy the dog. He is very crazy and hyper just like the rest of the family but I like him most of the time. He isn’t trained at all so that makes it hard but oh well. So that’s my family! Its funny because they are a lot like my real family. They already treat me like their older sister and I’ve only been here 3 days but I love it so much. They are very sweet to me just like my brothers are and we get along great! We also play a lot together and I seriously love being at home with them. There is never a dull or quiet moment here, just like at the Maxwell house! I’ll keep you posted on the family a lot, I'm sure that will be what I talk about the most! I really did get very lucky :) I haven't taken any pictures of the house yet, but it is beautiful! I will also take lots of pictures of the family this week. Hasta Luego!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Our Days in Madrid

Our boat ride around the lake in Parque de Retiro. Me and Brie did most of the paddling... figures right?
Awkward pose in front of the wall enclosing the statue of King Phillip in Parque de Retiro.
Our day trip to the Museo Del Prado. We saw like a million paintings, that place was huge! We did see some pretty cool stuff though, I liked it alot.
Standing in front of the Cathedral next to the Royal Palace. They have the coolest buildings here!
This is in Plaza Mayor, a really famous plaza in the center of Madrid. There was a lot of street performers and restaurants and just a lot of people everywhere. We hung out here almost all day the first day we were in Madrid.