“Ohana” Means Family

Greetings from Spain! It's hard to believe that 12 days ago I was freaking out about coming to  Spain and now I keep wondering what I was so worried about. It's only been 12 days but to me it feels like I've been here for months!

So to get some inspiration on a good blog for y'all (I'm picking up some Texas swag from my American friends from Texas) I decided to browse my pictures I've taken thus far in Spain. So I'm dedicating this post to my new friends (mis nuevos amigas).

It's like the first day of school all over again—all new people, a new place, and not one friend yet. My parents are always quick to assure me I'll do fine and everything will be okay, but no matter what they say I don't feel reassured until it happens. I've only had this experience a few other times in life — starting kindergarten, high school, and of course starting college at Wagner. Granted, I didn't think I would be this lucky coming to Spain. They say you create friends that last a lifetime in college, but I'm pretty sure I've found some lifelong friends here as well.

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Day 12. Hard to say I've found friends that great already, but it's not just about the friendship. It's about all the memories we've already created together as we all embark on this once-in-a-lifetime adventure. Yes, we are all here going to school and learning Spanish. But beneath that is a deeper reason why we are here in Spain: to have the time of our lives in a home away from home.970722_533648816695817_720670688_n

We all clicked together rather fast, all 32 of us. From the moment that we met at Granada airport, we were all ready to make this one of the best, most unforgettable summers of our lives; nervous but ready. Our first night out, we had no shame but to be extremely confident in who we were, and where we were from. For most of them, they've never met anyone from New York before, and apparently I "tawk" funny. All of you New Yorkers/Long Islanders reading this, you'll know what I'm "tawking bout." To be quite honest I think just because we say "Chawcolate" and add "W's" to our words only makes us unique — at least that what they tell me here!

We've already created amazing and hilarious memories together! One of my new Texas friends was paying too much attention to our really good looking camera man when she accidentally walked face first into a door at a Cathedral in Cordoba, and yes he got it all on video. I'm convinced it could win America's funniest home videos, or Spain's funniest home videos (if that even exists ! We've all created a family away from our families. As my friend Danielle says, "Ohana means family, and nobody gets left behind!" This was said after three kids from our group almost missed the bus to Cordoba last weekend. Since then, that saying has just stuck. "Ohana."

To all my readers: take a chance. Do something our of your realm. You never know how amazing it could turn out. Find a home away from home. I miss my home, my family, and my friends so much, but I wouldn't change this experience for anything. I don't even want to think about the end of this adventure because it means leaving behind friends who have helped make this summer unforgettable. For now, I will go on living day by day in this journey.  I feel so lucky to have met each and every one of them. This Friday will be two weeks here. Six more weeks. Stay tuned for my next blog; I am going hiking in the mountains on Sunday. I guess they didn't get the memo that I'm from the suburbs.

Until next time, ADIOS!

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Author: Nicole Fallon

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