Montana Dare is a student at the University of North Carolina – Wilmington and an ISA Featured Blogger. She studied abroad with ISA in Sevilla, Spain.
“Me encantan todos los pantalones.” Or in English, “I love all the pants”.
That was one of the first sentences I said to my host mom when I arrived in Sevilla, Spain. You can imagine her confusion. I was trying to say that I loved all the plants that were on our street, but I got the word plants and pants mixed up and now a month and a half later, my host mom still can’t stop laughing at me for my mistake.
In my Spanish class in America, I would have felt so embarrassed by my slip up, yet here in Spain with my mom, I join in with her laughter. Messing up words in Spanish no longer makes me feel like a complete idiot. With a host family, I have learned to laugh at my Spanish on a breakfast, lunch, and dinner kind of daily basis.
My host mom, Mama Mercedes, like most host moms, only speaks Spanish. My favorite meal is dinner because our conversations are always longer at the end of the day. At breakfast, we are rushing to school and at lunch we are rushing for our post-school siesta time nap. We always eat dinner with the TV on in the background which can be utilized as a conversation starter. This, combined with a limited vocabulary, lead to some interesting topics:
- Who is Messi and why is he always on TV?
- Is this your favorite TV show?
- What is your opinion about Catalonia’s fight for independence?
- Who is your favorite soccer team?
- Why do all the perfume commercials have English music?
- And my personal favorite, “Mama, es una regla que todos los jugadores de fútbol son guapos?” (Mom, is it a rule that all soccer players are beautiful?)*
*I thought this was a really funny joke, but I don’t think my mom got it because instead of laughing, she answered my question by telling me not all of them had amazing faces but all of them had great bodies because they had to be very athletic.
If you can’t tell, we watch a lot of soccer in my host family.
The world awaits…discover it.