On Fourth of July weekend, my classmates and I flew out of the United States to embark on our study abroad adventure in Salamanca, Spain. After spending the last nineteen Fourth of July’s on the beach watching fireworks with my family, it was a bit odd not being home for this holiday. The other girls on my program and I decided to celebrate our American Independence by dressing in red, white and blue clothes to go out for a night on the town.
Nightlife is very prominent in Salamanca. I even saw a t-shirt that said, “La Capital Nocturna”, which means “The Nightlife Capital”. Spaniards take naps in the middle of the day so that they can stay out all night. Most stores will even close during “la siesta”, or nap time, and reopen for a good part of the rest of the night. Many people stay out until 4 o’clock in the morning. I have always been a night owl and I am happy to be in a place where everyone stays up as late (and even later) than I do.
La Plaza Mayor is a centrally located place that is easy for my friends on the program to get to from their host families’ houses and the University of Salamanca. So far, it has been our go to meeting spot. On the Fourth of July, we agreed to meet under the clock after we finished dinner with our host families. That’s another adjustment; dinner here isn’t served until 9:00 pm. As soon as we met around 10:30 pm, we practiced our Spanish by asking a nearby girl to take our picture. It turned out that she spoke English too. There are a lot of other students from all over the world studying in Salamanca for the summer.