Big facts to get out of the way?
1) I'm a community college student from Seattle.
2) I've always wanted to travel. Always.
3) The college that I attend is offering a 10 week study abroad stay in Barcelona, Spain.
4) And...one of my biggest, deepest goals in life?
Is to become bilingual.
To possess that amazing ability to actually speak a second language? Or a third?
I can't even begin to express how incredible that is.
Especially when, during my college career, I've been blessed to make friends with a good chunk of international students. I've got to commend their bravery of garnering an education over here...and learning to speak an entirely new language.
No easy task.
So. Here I am. Now about to dock the same boat that I've so admired and wished for, from a distance.
My trip wouldn't be the same, time wise.
I'm only in Barcelona a little over two and a half months.
But, Catalan is the main language that the locals speak. I love the Spanish language and I want to make the most of any Study Abroad opportunity that comes my way (you don't get very many).
So, my questions are as follows:
Would this be worth it?
I have a trip I could potentially take to South Africa. Whew. Decisions.
Would the locals be offended that I'm not primarily speaking Catalan because I am there to learn Spanish? I don't want to be seen as the annoying, patriotic American; persons that are a bit more ignorant than they should be and may find it ideal to stay home and brush up on some basic, cultural research, and manners, before traveling.
And I also don't want to offend any of the local people in Barcelona because I want to foster a deep, enriching experience between them and myself, with a solid respect to those I am visiting.
Would I be scoffed at? Because, well, let's face it; my Spanish skills will most likely be akin to a four year old talking with his mouth full of oatmeal. I know I'll have to get over my initial hesitation and just speak. Even if it is a terrible jumble of Spanish, perhaps a miraculous bit of Catalan, and spurts of English here and there. I mean, I know that we all have to start somewhere.
And opportunities like this NEED to be snatched up when they come.
But, I'd love to get some opinions.
I know I don't fit the normal MO of this website. This is going out on a limb, even for me.
But, before the deadline to a scholarship rolls up (01/16/15), I want to try at least one more avenue to help in my deciphering process.
Thank you everyone.
Any feedback I get will calm this travel sick, maybe a teensy bit scared, young adult over here.
Safe, peaceful traveling to you all. = )
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Big facts to get out of the way?