Hi guys !
For the last five months I have been living as an Erasmus exchange student in Granada, Spain. It is actually interesting because usually students experience a very big culture shock, but it was actually the reverse for me. Originally I study in Groningen in the Netherlands but I am myself not Dutch and it was my first time living there when I started my bachelor. When it came to my Erasmus, I received less of a culture shock in Granada, than when I first arrived in the Netherlands. This could be because I am French and that my culture resembles more the Spanish than the Dutch one. So whilst my Dutch friends were trying to get accustomed to eating dinner at around 9pm I was feeling very comfortable. And I have to admit that I quite liked the acceptance of ‘arriving late’ at a meeting. As a result, I felt at ease in this beautiful southern town.
Of course, I had some difficulties getting accustomed to the language because even though I spoke Spanish before arriving, I was definitely not prepared for the Andalusian accent! And albeit the fact that financially it was very hard for me because I didn’t find a job as I had hoped for and had to go to Senegal urgently during Christmas (unexpected expenses…), I enjoyed the city very much. I love to walk around and discover new areas or go up the Sacromonte to enjoy a view of the Alhambra by sunset.
Besides my macho housemate, I met some amazing people and have to admit that the Spaniards are very kind and welcoming people.
In relation to the Erasmus program, I think that it is a wonderful idea, but I have to admit that the educational quality of the Universidad de Granada is very low compared to the Rijksuniversiteit Groningen. If there was one recommendation I could give to future Erasmus students it would be that they bring warm clothes and blankets because the houses in Andalusia are very cold during winter.