Parting Ways With My Home for the Summer

In Spain by Eller Student

Andrew Johnson

Major: Business Management

Graduation Date: 05/2017

     I’ve now been back in the United States for about a week. Coming back to the states was a bit of a relief, but it was hard to part ways with what’s been my home for the summer. Looking back on this summer, I learned more and challenged myself more than I have in my life. I was put in situations that I would never have imagined and used my problem solving skills to get through it. Completely changing your way of life is not something easy to do, but something that is important to understand and realize things you maybe wouldn’t have before. For example, the difference in eating habits, sleeping patterns, and just the norms of life. I got used to smaller portion sizes, taking daily siestas, and paying to use the bathroom in public places. These differences taught me how different we actually live in different parts of the world eventhough we inhabit the same place. It was also interesting living in a city that is very old in design compared to cities in the United States. Everything is older, architecture and the design of the city is all a lot more crammed than your normal cities in the United States.

     Now that I am back in the United States I realize the convenience we have compared to Europe. This doesn’t always mean good though in my opinion. The way of life is so much different in the sense that in Europe you ask for some napkins and they bring you one tiny napkin versus having a whole stack on your table already in America. Or in Europe you pay three or more dollars for some water at dinner. There is also a lot more business chains here in America compared to Europe. I find this convenient because you know what you’re getting before you even go there. For example, one of the first things I did when I got home was go to Chipotle. I knew exactly what I was getting versus not really knowing what you’re going to be eating before you go out to eat in Barcelona because of the lack of chains. This can be good and bad also. There happen to be a lot more processed foods that are mass-produced which isn’t a thing in Europe. It has also been very convenient coming back to a place where English is the common language. Although I have accidentally used Spanish a couple of times back in the U.S, it is very nice to know that you will be able to communicate anywhere you go. Overall, its nice to be back living the same lifestyle I am so accustomed to, but living in Europe over the summer opened my eyes up to the positives and negatives of different lifestyles.