My parents have said over and over again that I’m in Spain to study, and having fun is really only secondary. In fact, if I mention having fun over Skype or on the phone, they’ll assume that this means that I’m not working hard enough. Indeed, I really do want to make it clear to people who think that studying abroad is going to be a never-ending party that this really isn’t remotely true. It’s still school and it’s still work.
However, I know that if I went to school in Texas, I wouldn’t feel any great need to see the sites or check out all of the really cool stuff that’s there, even though Texas does have plenty of cool stuff in its own right. In Spain though, I really do want to go on the weekends to see all of the great stuff in Spain. It’s even been enough of an incentive that I try to do my homework early, which is definitely a first for me.
I’ve never even been on a zip-line before, but Spain literally has a zip-line that lets you go from one country to another. It isn’t super long or anything: I think I spent around a minute in the air. However, I still managed to cross nations while on a zip-line, which sounds like the sort of thing that you would only be able to do if you could fly, or if you had some sort of futuristic technological device that could give you all sorts of cool powers that would seem magical. You know how you can stop in some places in the United States and stand at a point at the border, where you are literally standing in two different states at once? The zip-line is like that. It helps you play games with the border of the country so you really can visit several places immediately, at least technically.
I am also really pleased to say that I have officially eaten at the world’s oldest restaurant. I guess eating at a restaurant isn’t normally the sort of thing you’re supposed to be proud of or ashamed of: it’s just the kind of thing that people do sometimes and it’s totally neutral. Going to Sobrino de Botin is definitely not neutral. I went there on a weekend trip, and it was fantastic. I guess we don’t technically know with absolute certainty that this is the world’s oldest restaurant, but it probably is, and it sounds really cool one way or another. This is a restaurant that dates back to 1725, which is too cool for words. Fortunately, the food is fresher than that, so you get the best of both worlds.
I know that I should be recommending all of the historical sites that you can see in Spain, and I do recommend them as well. I actually went there when I was working on a history paper and I ended up talking with one of the guides for a half an hour about the topic I was working on, and it’s cool to talk to a real expert in person at the site itself. However, I can tell you that riding on an international zip-line is something that you can’t experience online, and neither is eating at the world’s oldest restaurant.