The university and a little surprise.

Posted on September 28th, 2011 by

My two weeks of intensive Spanish grammar with CIEE came to an end and my regular classes started on Monday. This semester I am taking two classes at CIEE and two at the University of Sevilla. The classes I am taking at the University are the “cursos para los extranjeros” – classes for foreigners, which was designed to be for people learning Spanish from other countries as well but so far all the people from my classes are from the States, just different programs. I have got an idea of how my rest of semester is going to be.

The CIEE classes seem to be a little more work than the classes at the university. All the classes are in Spanish and are taught by a university professor but the classes at CIEE are of smaller size and seem to be similar to those at the States. We have many group assignments, presentation and homework after each day of class, whereas classes at the university are bigger and are more of lecture style classes. Even though we have only around twenty people in each class at the university, students are more likely to not have that much attention from the professors. For example, when we start a class at CIEE, the first thing we do was to get to know each other, introducing ourselves, where we are from and what our majors are. For those classes at the university the professor started right away with the introduction of the course.

A street named "Aire" - the oldest street in Sevilla

Our professor giving us a tour around the some old part of Sevilla, as part of a class at CIEE

One thing I find interesting about universities here is that there are only two of them in Sevilla, University of Sevilla and university of Pablo Olavide that is much smaller. Unlike in the States where it is normal for students to go to school in a different city or different states, almost every student who live in Sevilla go to college in Sevilla. I have asked some students why they chose this school and they simply said that it is the only school and it is not common here to live in one city and go to school in another.

As people in Sevilla work until late, some of my classes are at later time too. For example, on Monday and Wednesday I have classes from nine till eleven in the morning and my last class is from seven until nine in the evening. In the time between classes that is not long enough for me to go back to my homestay, my friends and I usually walk around and explore the city. There are so many things to see here! Recently in Plaza Nueva, usually just a place for people to sit and hang out, appear some stands that sell a lot of interesting crafts such as necklace, bracelet or leather backpacks. People here do not really know the reason they are there but the stands are usually there for a few weeks, a month and then move to somewhere else.Just a few days ago, a “Festival of Nations” was open right in front of the university with similar stands but they also sell food from different regions in the world and have performances at night.

Here are some pictures I took at the stands

I bought a necklace for 10 euros at this one stand. The price was originally 12 euros but I bargained with the storeowner and he agreed to sell it for 10 euros. Unfortunately I only brought with me 9 euros and I told him that. He told me I could give to him 9 euros then and came back another day to give him back the one more euro. I was surprised and sort of confused and then he told me that he lives there, he is going to be there for another month, I can come to give him at any time or ask my friends to do that for me. I was amazed! I borrowed an euro from my friends so I did not have to owe him anything but I could have just paid 9 euros and never come back! A euro does not cost much but apparently the trust was priceless!


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