Basurde Xiao Long

The Eagle – May 11, 2012 – ¨A word for everyone in Spain¨

El pasado 11 de mayo la revista de la Escuela Americana de Shanghai publicó el siguiente artículo sobre el Viaje a España 2012, escrito por una de las estudiantes. Jocelyn Hung, la autora, también se apuntó al viaje del año pasado, al Camino de Santiago.


Podéis leer el artículo on-line AQUÍ.


A continuación lo reproduzco (pero está en inglés):


The Eagle Magazine – May 11, 2012



By Jocelyn Hung, Grade 10, Puxi Campus.


After 18 hours crossing the globe, 16 SAS Puxi students arrived in Madrid, Spain. We were accompanied by Spanish teacher Señor Castro and Chinese teacher Ms. Shi. The upcoming spring break brought different thoughts and associations to each and every one of us: it meant family for Yi Ying Huang, churros for myself, green for Chloe Lester, bonding for Eva Huang, tortillas for Monica Pan, openness for Monica Chang, moonwalk for Carolyn Shao, photo opportunities for Jeremy Shen, bus-rides for Max Chang, interesting postcards for Xin Shui Zhang, snow for Kelley Chen, chocolate for Colin, music for Casey Huang, sweets for Charlie Wen, something new for Karson Mo, and unforgettable for Stephanie Donithan.


As soon as we arrived in Madrid, we felt the warmth of the sun, and the sweetness of the air. The people were stylish and affectionate, while the buildings are old and beautiful, capturing a handful of history in every brick. This being my second visit, I enjoyed recognizing the landmarks and even some streets. The experience in Madrid was still interesting and somewhat new, like Señor Castro’s new haircut. In the days we spent in Madrid, we saw the General Strike, visited parks, shopped near the Don Quixote monument and took many pictures near the Templo de Debod.


There was a table at the back of the bus and we played cards for hours on our way to Vitoria-Gasteiz, Senor Castro’s hometown. We met the families that we would be living with in Vitoria-Gasteiz and some spoke very little English. Luckily, one of my roommates was half Mexican, even though the other one only knew how to say “¡Todo esta bien!” Nevertheless, we became really close to the families and tears were shed on the last night when we all exchanged gifts and blessings.


In Vitoria-Gasteiz, we visited a church with a boat flipped over as the roof, a castle with a haunted toilet (we called the ghost “the phantom of the toilet”), streets filled with graffiti, a three-meter tall statue, and the house of the Basque Country president. We even made the front cover of the newspaper called El Correo. The most unique feature about this city is that it is both new and old.


Throughout the next few days we visited a fancy winery, boated to France, and walked along the beach. One evening we stayed in a hostel in the mountains outside San Sebastian. Guess what we ate for dinner? Tortillas, again!


During the day we visited the Guggenheim Museum and a castle on the top of the mountain Frias; an afternoon was spent kayaking at 10º C in an ice-cold river that caused our hands to freeze until they were numb, but we kept paddling until our shoulders ached. Despite the pain, the experience was amazing. At night we bonded and played games like the human knot game and charades.


During the last few days, we tasted natural salt, in the Salt Valley, and saw the Good Friday Parade on our way back to Madrid. Weirdly enough, in the middle of the ride, we encountered snow! However, it did not compare to the weird feeling of having to leave Spain. The reality hit us as we numbered off. A list of disparate events and activities had sewn together to make a perfect Viaje a España.


And here is our list: families, because our home stays are like family. Churros, because of its amazingness and crunchiness. Green, because of the endless meadows, Vitoria-Gasteiz, and our sweatshirt. Bonded, because the 18 individuals became one. Tortilla, because we ate around a thousand of them. Open, because we got used to each other walking around in the same room. Moonwalk, because three of us can now somewhat do the moonwalk. Photos, because we never rested our cameras. Bus-ride, because that was where we rested, played card games, and wrote journals. Postcards, because the places we visited were unreal and like postcards. Snow, because of the random chunk of snow we encountered. Chocolate, because Cola Cao with bread was our breakfast for 10 days. Songs, because around seven songs were stuck in our heads in Spain. Sweet, because of the crisp Spanish air. New, because we experienced so many things for the first time. And Unforgettable, because of all of the above.

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