Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Uruguay 2012

After seventh grade I took a two-week trip to Queretaro, Mexico, during which I lived with a Mexican family and two of my classmates. I left having learned everything that would be taught to me during my eighth-grade Spanish class. I had such a good experience with the trip that I chose to take another language immersion trip this summer. The differences are numerous--for instance, I'm staying with a family and no other students from my school, it lasts five and a half weeks instead of two, and it is in Uruguay. But the end goal is the same: learning Spanish.

Puerta, Punta del Este

I have been in Uruguay for about two-and-a-half or three weeks so far, and although our actual classes aren't nearly as intense or focused as they were during my trip to Mexico, I'm still learning a lot of Spanish. My host family thinks I speak very well and since Spanish is their first language I feel obligated to take their word for it, I still think structured learning in a classroom to help with grammatical concepts would be helpful. So far I haven't learned any grammar in class that I didn't already know; I'd guess this is because our teachers didn't divide the class into two sections based on level of ability.

Stray kitty in Maldonado

Outside of class, we have taken several trips. Our first weekend trip took us to Punta del Este, a very popular beach city. It felt practically abandoned now that it's winter in the southern hemisphere: its winter population is around 7000 while the summer population rests at somewhere around 150,000. Those people are hosted in many hotels that vary in quality but are all expensive. Without them the city felt very empty.

Most of the photos I took are still sitting in the folder I imported them into, waiting as RAW files before I go through the long and tedious process of clicking every. single. one. open into Photoshop. That's something I really hate about using Windows--unless I get Adobe Bridge or something similar I won't be able to view thumbnails of all my RAW files. Those photos will come eventually!

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