I received an email back in the fall about a woman (Monica) from Albacete, Spain who wanted to do an exchange in Nov 2014. I was going through a lot and it was not convenient to go to Spain then – so I offered a hospitality exchange. Monica was coming for a conference at NIH and offered to bring her friend Mamen along for some R&R.
Mamen arrived in Nov for a 2 week stay while Monica was busy with her conference. We never saw Monica but were very pleased to share our lives with Mamen for what turned out to be 2 months.
Yes, I know. It sounds crazy. My husband was going to be gone for most of Dec and January so I offered Mamen to extend past her 2 weeks. We went to holiday parties, shared Christmas dinner, happy hours, business mixers, the gym, my favorite coffee shop, etc. My Spanish greatly improved and her English as well.
I said that in Jan I was going on a trip somewhere to escape the cold and loneliness – so we planned a trip to Panama together. It was nice to have a traveling companion (besides a 3 year old). It was great that we both speak Spanish. We had a wonderful trip!
As we arrived home here, she packed her bags and returned for her flight back to Spain.
What a time – for all of us! I CAN’T wait to go visit Monica in the beautiful, quaint old city – home to “Man of La Mancha”. Maybe in 2015. Too many great places I need to go visit!!!