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The Brown Noser

Semester Abroad Opens Student’s Eyes To New Ways To Stay Immersed In American Culture

Published Friday, September 16th, 2016

Returning from an enlightening semester in Spain, Eric Gaborie ’17 can’t wait to tell his friends and family about all the ways that the experience opened his eyes to different and exciting ways to stay immersed in American culture, sources report.

“It was incredible. The nearest Burger King was on the other side of town, so I had to walk through all these beautiful windy Barcelona streets every time I wanted some fries!” Gaborie said, adding that luckily, his Spotify Premium account allowed him to stream the new Drake album on his journey. “The burgers were good, though. Did you know, at Spanish Burger Kings, you can order beer?”

“We think our American way is the only way to do things,” Gaborie stated, “But as I sipped that cerveza, I realized there’s so much more to the world out there, if we just know where to look.”

Gaborie said it’s the little changes that made everything come alive for him. “On my phone, the Facebook notification globe icon spun around to the Eastern hemisphere,” he said, pointing out that Spaniards probably don’t think that’s weird. “Boy, when I saw that, I really knew I was in Spain.”

“The Wi-Fi at the Center wasn’t great, though,” he continued, describing the academic building in which he and hundreds of other Americans would gather to take classes taught by “actual Spanish people.” “It got to the point where I couldn’t even stream episodes of “Game of Thrones” under the desk anymore.”

“But hey, if that’s how people do it in Spain, I’m happy to blend in,” he added. “I’m so fortunate I got a chance to experience what life is like for people who have to really struggle to watch HBO, take an Uber, or find a decent brand of peanut butter.”

Gaborie further recalled how he was forced to get creative to continue consuming American culture from across the ocean. “I searched all over the city to find a pub that was showing the Super Bowl. I finally found one next to Sagrada Familia—but it was full of Broncos fans. One of the kids there goes to school with my buddy Mike!”

“Never would have made that connection if I didn’t go to Spain,” he finished. “It’s amazing how traveling can expand your worldview.”

At press time, Gaborie was visiting Providence’s only tapas restaurant.

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