Spain—Day 5

Today is exciting. I start one week’s worth of intensive language classes in Valencia. So, first things first, I had to wake up and navigate my way over to the school. Before they put you in class they give you a placement exam that tells them what your level of español is. Well, I could have told them that my level was zero, nothing, or whatever the system is.

There once was a time when I was pretty good at spanish. I took two years in high school, and as the catholic god is my witness I swear I was good! I had a decent vocabulary, an excellent accent, and I never screwed up the conjugations. Well, folks, that time has passed. I am a full on spanish idiot now. I barely got my name right on the placement exam. They said not to answer any of the questions you weren’t sure about, which means they’ll be able to reuse my placement test—it was clean as a freshly scoped colon.

Anywho, they gave us a quick explanation of how the classes would work, and what the school layout is. They gave this explanation in both spanish and english (last time they’ll speak english all week). I think this is telling, too: when the teacher did the english explanation, she looked me dead in the eye the entire time. Yes, I get it, I am the slow student.

Once that was done I walked the 30 minutes from school back into the downtown area to check into my student housing for the week, which can charitably be described as a hovel. But it has a bathroom, wifi, and I don’t have a roommate, so fingers crossed.

The first class starts in 30 minutes, and if I make it through it without crying I’ll consider it a moral victory.

Seriously, Valencia is amazing, though. I stumbled into this tiny plaza this morning at 645am, and was confronted by a little church that seemed like it was a thousand years old, with the sun rising off to my left. It was staggering. No, wait, that was me, because I hadn’t had breakfast (desayuno). That was a moment I was happy to be alive for, though.

Spanish for the day: “Dónde estamos?”
Translation: “Where are we?” I say this and hold out my map when I get lost. Three times a day.

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