Erasmus student in Barcelona – first impressions

Monday 1st –  6 am. Worcester: Nervous and scared – those are the appropriate adjectives to describe my state on my way to Barcelona, where I would spend my semester abroad. Although sad, these feelings were inevitable, as I was not only leaving Worcester, but the university and the way of teaching I got used to, to start a new adventure in a different city. And while in England I had my cousin, here I am completely on my own, without a safety net or the possibility to stop this “carousel ride” whenever I want and go back home.

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5 pm. Barcelona: The first night in the university halls made me realize I hadn’t packed anything useful for the room, so my new home was empty and dull. Some shopping was clearly needed and thus my feeling of being lost kicked in. It took me about an hour to find a groceries shop (if only I knew then there were 2 supermarkets just outside the university campus) and buy some food.

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Tuesday 2nd – The second day, things started to look up. I got to have a tour around the campus, which is huge and finish my registration. I also met some other international students and because the weather is so nice here (20-21 °C) we spent the day chilling outside the university cafeteria. We then all moved to IKEA, to buy pillows, cutlery, and decorations for our rooms. By the time we got back, I was so tired, I fell asleep immediately.

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Wednesday 3rd- Although different, I started to get accustomed to all the changes. I had to run different errands, like setting up a bank account and finding the best option for transport. I finally got to buying proper food (been surviving with sandwiches the last 2 days) and test my new kitchen by making some really tasty fajitas. After that, it was time to go to the first party in Barcelona !!! Exciting, right? Weeeeell, things didn’t quite go according to plan and we missed the last train. At the end of the night, I think that was actually a good thing because we ended up having a really amazing house party. And guess what? No one there was from the same country (cultural experience…DEFINITELY!!).

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Thursday 4th – After a long night, I decided to have a chilled afternoon and go to Barcelona. We got lost at some point, but we found this cool all you can eat place and stuffed ourselves with paella, pizza, pasta, and chocolate. We then got to the center of the city, Placa Catalunya and just stayed there, on a bench, enjoying the sun and the view. It was the perfect afternoon! The night brought a themed party (The carnival is coming to Barcelona) and I can happily say this time we made it in time for the train (yeey team!).

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Friday 5th – Now that I am writing this post, I can’t believe how many adventures I had these past few days and how quickly my mood changed from feeling lost and alone to now – when I am so thankful I started this journey. And things are only going to get better! Starting tomorrow, we have organized a whole weekend to visit the most important and beautiful places in Barcelona and I am very excited to share these moments with my new friends…and with you all, of course!

Till next time,

A very happy exchange student.