Finishing up our final week of classes at Académia Hispana in Córdoba has been enjoyable as we spend less time getting lost in the streets and more time in our favorite spots. Every day in this city our knowledge of the culture, traditions, language, and destinations has grown, with much credit due to the Académia and our teachers, Noelia and Marisol.
On Wednesday, Marisol took us on a trip to see the century-old patio displays at Patios del Palacio de Viana. Patios in Córdoba have a long tradition of competitions to see who can create the most beautiful courtyards. All different types of plants, trees, bushes, and flowers are used to portray beautiful scenes. Although it is January and can get cold, the patios had plenty of green and lively plants to see. Some of the spaces on display at the Palacio de Viana date back to the 16th century. I think we can all agree that coming back here during the spring would be an amazing sight.
This week we also got our final opportunity to exchange language learning with native Spanish speakers. Called an ‘intercambio,’ we have the chance to meet native Spanish speakers who are learning English at a similar level to us. These are always a blast for because it provides a unique way to learn more about a different culture. We were typically given prompts about stereotypes and generalizations of our own cultures, then asked to discuss what we think. It’s a great way to learn and practice Spanish, while also being very interesting to hear and help intermediate English speakers.
Our last day of class was spent today by playing fun games, eating lunch as an entire class (plus the professors), and saying goodbye to Noelia. We ate lunch at a restaurant called “100 Montaditos” which, as its name states, has just short of 100 different kinds of small ‘bocadillos’ (sandwiches) to choose from. This restaurant was particularly fun because it was easy to try many bocadillos with an assortment of meats, vegetables, and cheeses unique to Spain. After a short break to relax, we grouped up again to explore the Plaza de la Corredera, the Plaza del Potro and a museum about the history of flamenco. It never fails to amaze me about how much history can be condensed into a small city. Our last day in Córdoba is approaching rapidly, as we look forward to exploring the annual Mercado Medieval (medieval market). This festival only goes for three days at the end of every January, and we are lucky enough to have a free day in Córdoba to experience it!