Tellus: (tel’us), n. 1. [Latin] earth, soil, and the land; a country; the world. 2. a collection of Willamette University student’s insights, stories, photos and thoughts from their experiences studying abroad.

Archive for January, 2012

Kiwis and their Rugby. Madness, eh? »

I lived in Dunedin last semester and fortunately, I happened to be there during the Rugby World Cup. What kind of luck is that? The All Blacks (NZ pro rugby team) played a game at this stadium during the beginning of my stay before the Cup started. Since kiwis are absolutely crazy about their rugby […]

Living Quarters »

I took this photo looking down from my bedroom onto the other residents’ living quarters. While I could have uploaded a beautiful picture of a cathedral, sunset or palace, this photo captures the more mundane and daily aspect of my life in Granada as it was the view I saw everyday. Moreover it is very typical of the living quarters of most spaniards. In Spain, the vast majority of people live in highly concentrated urban centers with little space being wasted. Starting in the 40s and 50s there was a massive exodus away from rural communities toward large urban developments and many of the buildings constructed during this wave continue to house a multitude. Although one doesn’t have as much personal space as in a suburban home, apartments are far more practical in the context of spanish life. Indeed the spanish home is a sacred place in which only family and those very close may enter. It is not the tradition to host friends at one’s home. Rather they go out for tapas or drinks at local restraunts or bars and enjoy pleasant strolls through the town. Hence extra living space for entertaining is unnecessary. At first this was difficult to understand because I wanted to invite friends over to hangout, watch movies, eat, etc, but it was soon no issue as we found it was more fun to do those things outside.