Posts Tagged With: France

So this is goodbye?

Well, I am officially back in New Jersey so I guess this is goodbye. I could talk about what an amazing and life changing experience this was and how I grew as a person and sound as cliche as a Study Abroad pamphlet. So rather than be a redundant bore, I’m going to talk about how delicious the food is in Europe.

I actually tried snails! They were surprisingly minty and gross.

I actually tried snails! They were surprisingly minty and gross.

Spanish Tortilla with salmorejo (creamy tomato soup)

Spanish Tortilla with salmorejo (creamy tomato soup)

First, I’d like to thank my incredible host mother because home is where I had the best meals. She even taught me how to cook a few of my favorites, like Tortilla Espa√Īola.

Churros and Chocolate: possibly the best thing to ever exist.

Churros and Chocolate: possibly the best thing to ever exist.

Those who study abroad and have the option of a host family should definitely do it, without my homestay, I would not have been exposed to the delicious cuisine of Spain without breaking the bank.

Patatas Bravas :)

Patatas Bravas ūüôā

Pancakes from a very american brunch place in Spain

Pancakes from a very american brunch place in Spain

In Spain, the majority of the food was deliciously fried or very meat heavy. Ham and cheese croquettes was one of my favorite meals. The seafood in Spain is also beyond amazing (before going there I did not eat fish…that changed quickly upon arrival!), cod fish, shrimp, and other shell fish are popular.

Ham and cheese croquettes.

Ham and cheese croquettes.

Don’t be surprised either if you find all your meals lacking in vegetables. Coming from a home where I ate raw veggies on the daily, it was hardest to get used to having all of my veggies cooked in oil or fried. Bread is another staple at every meal. My host mother would buy bread from the bakery basically every other day and we would eat it with breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Pirinono (a cinnamon-bun like dessert from Granada)

Pirinono (a cinnamon-bun like dessert from Granada)

Spanish coffee is better than Starbucks. But then again, any coffee is better than Starbucks.

Spanish coffee is better than Starbucks. But then again, any coffee is better than Starbucks.

Another main difference between Spanish and American cuisine is the hour at which food is eaten. In Spain, I would eat breakfast, then snack, then lunch at around 3pm, then another snack, and dinner was early at anywhere between 9 and 10pm.

I found the best cake place in Sevilla (its near Plaza Nueva!)

I found the best cake place in Sevilla (its near Plaza Nueva!)

Cookies from Madrid

Cookies from Madrid

Besides just eating in Spain, I tried foods from eleven countries total: France, Holland, England, Morocco, Portugal, Czech Republic, Scotland, Belgium, Germany, and Hungary.

Sausage and potatoes in Budapest.

  Sausage and potatoes in Budapest.

Dutch cheese

Dutch cheese

Currywurst in Germany

Currywurst in Germany

Beef in Hungary!

Beef in Hungary!

Trying local cuisine was one of my favorite aspects of traveling but that is just because I’m an incredible foodie.¬†IMG_4766

Fancy grilled cheese in Paris

Fancy grilled cheese in Paris

French Croissant

French Croissant

Anyways, I just wanted to take a moment to thank everyone (AKA my grandma) for reading about and keeping up with my semester in Spain.

Belgian Waffle

Belgian Waffle

Adios! 

Coffee

Coffee

Fancy Iced Coffee

Fancy Iced Coffee

More Coffee

More Coffee

French Coffee

French Coffee

Coffee from an eastern european country (I forget which one)

Coffee from an eastern european country (I forget which one)

Spanish Coffee....Again

Spanish Coffee….Again

I'm not the only one who drinks coffee!

I’m not the only one who drinks coffee!

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Categories: Food, Study Abroad, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

An American in Paris

The day before I left for Spain, my grandma called¬†to wish me a safe and fun trip. This was right around¬†the time of¬†the Charlie Hebdo attacks, so right before hanging up, she said “and please, stay the heavens away from Paris”, so I would like to start out by apologizing to my grandma, since the first place I visited outside of Spain was, in fact, Paris.

IMG_3420I had a few reasons to go to Paris, to start out, my roommate was visiting the city the same weekend, I have two friends studying there (which meant free lodging!), and the last time I was in Paris, I was three years old so I wanted to see if I remembered anything.

I flew Ryanair (which despite what everyone told me, was not chaotic nor strict, it actually just felt like any other flight) and arrived Wednesday night. The scariest feeling in the world is entering a country and not being able to speak a word of the language other than “merci” and “fromage”.

Thank god public transportation is universally¬†very similar because I was able to figure out the metro system and get to my friend’s stop with relatively no trouble. That night we got sweet crepes and I fell asleep very quickly since traveling always tires me out.

I didn't realize I wasn't supposed to take pictures in the Jewish Quarter! Oops!

I didn’t realize I wasn’t supposed to take pictures in the Jewish Quarter! Oops!

The next day we got lunch in the Jewish Quarter. At the time, there were many armed guards in the area. I am not used to walking down a street and seeing soldiers carrying weapons so that was definitely an interesting sight. We ate delicious falafel and then I walked around the area, admiring all of the buildings even though it was freezing. In the evening, we ate Chinese food in honor of the Chinese New Year.

On Friday we started the morning by walking near the river and seeing the Notre Dame.IMG_3471_2

I think it is amazing to see the architectural differences between cities. Paris definitely has a cohesive look that is nothing like Sevilla (or New York for that matter), but it is equally as beautiful.

Later that day I met up with my roommate, Victoria, and two other friends to eat dinner and see the Eiffel Tower up close.IMG_3517

It was so pretty at night, all lit up! We also got very lucky with lines and were able to go to the top.

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I actually remember going to the top with my dad when I was three. I remember he wouldn’t carry me the whole way up. It’s weird how memories work.

On Saturday we went to the outside of the Louvre. I’m not a huge fan of art museums, so I didn’t really want to go inside but I do love impressionism so instead we went inside Musee d’Orsay and saw Monet and Van Gogh. The museum itself is very beautiful because it used to be a train station. We also got to cut the line because our student cards got us free admission.

The Musee d'Orsay

The Musee d’Orsay

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Afterwards, we went to the bridge with all of the locks which I thought was really pretty even with all of the recently added plywood (they had to put it up to stop people from adding more locks because they are weighing down the bridge too much!). Then for dinner we got bread and cheese and chocolate which was delicious.

I really liked Paris overall, but I must say that I am very glad I chose Sevilla to study. I prefer the Spanish way of life as well as a warmer and smaller city. By the time I had to leave, my brain was already itching to speak Spanish and see my host family once again!

Categories: Study Abroad, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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