Surrounded by Packing Peanuts

You would think that the relief of being done with finals would have set in already. But with 25 days to pack an entire year into a storage unit and a summer into a backpack, my head is still reeling with the classic finals outburst, “THERES NOT ENOUGH TIME TO DO ALL OF THIS”. But for whatever amount of panic packing gives me, I just can’t get myself to choose packing over hiking. Procrastination at it’s finest ladies and gentlemen.

Well, packing will eventually get done. But for now, I’m just anticipating the summer I have ahead of me. In 25 days I will be returning to Portugal, where I lived for a year in high school. This time, with my very non-portuguese boyfriend by my side. I will be spending a month visiting family and friends from Oporto to Lisboa, playing traveler and translator. After I kick my boyfriend back to America, I’m heading to my program in Leon, Spain. Although this part of my trip is only a 24 hour transition, it’s going to be a shocker. I wonder what going from a country I love and know so intimately, to a place where they have silly Spanish accents is going to do to me. Will I be amused? Will I feel vulnerable? Or will I throw my dignity to the wind and embrace every unique thing about Spain? I think the transition from Portuguese to Spanish is also going to be a fascinating process. (disclaimer: I’m a linguistic major nerd) While a lot of my fellow dawgs in this program don’t speak spanish, at least they have a clean slate to start building up their grammar and lexicon. They will be learning a second language through immersion, but from a much different starting point. I’ve got a strong portuguese influence on my spanish speaking, even now. I start out with the best of intentions, and slowly just creep back to what I know best. I hope my classmates and I will be able to collaborate on those different starting points, and immerse ourselves into Castillan beautifully and completely.

So, I’m teetering between tearing-my-hair-out-panicked & wistfully listening to the spanish radio. Striving for balance….ohmmmmm……