Amigos – Sarah Budziak in Santiago

Honestly the best part about my study abroad experience was the people I got to meet.
10458649_10152441745905169_513984158246928807_nI came in to my study abroad experience knowing one girl and I assumed that I would just stick with her through the whole journey and sort of get to know other people. I could not have made a worse prediction for my time in Spain. After a week or two I found myself forming a group with three other people and looking back on my time in Spain I don’t know what I would have done if we didn’t all become friends. In the beginning we used each other to find our way home because we realized that we all lived 2 blocks from one another. Rogelio, Bri, Marissa, and I were what we liked to call “the fam.” We were each other’s family during this time in Spain. We each had host families and liked each of our respective families but it’s different knowing there is a group of people who is going to be there to stand by your side no matter what. Every day after class we would go home to eat lunch and immediately after we all finished taking naps we would go and meet on the corner closest to all of our houses. We would meet there and then head off into the city to explore or participate in some sort of activity planned by our program. We hardly ever did anything without one another. If we all weren’t together at least two of us were. It was sort of like an unspoken rule that where one of us went the others would follow.

When you study abroad talking about surface level experiences will only get you so far and after awhile you must start talking about more things in your life. This really causes you to get to know people very well and it causes you to get closer to people at a rate that is much faster than when you are in your home country. We all bonded over our shared experiences of being in a foreign country and we bonded over our shared experiences in our own country. I never thought I could get as close as I did to a group of people so fast but I know that after this experience in Spain that I have found people who I will always call my friends. We may not stay in close contact after graduation and I may not see them for years but if I ever ran into this people again I would immediately feel like I had found a long lost friend. There is a bond formed between us that may fade and it may slip our minds but I think it is a bond that can never be broken. I highly encourage everyone to find their own group of friends like this because it is a friendship that is hard to describe but is worth more than you can imagine.

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