Wednesday, April 17, 2013

April Showers Bring May Flowers

Spring is in the air and it has finally stopped raining in Granada after it rained the entire month of March into April! Now it is hot and sunny, everything is green, and Granada is in full force.  Today, the first year students are in Málaga and I'm reflecting on my time with them so far this semester.  This group has been wonderfully attentive, enthusiastic, and good natured as they continue to improve their English with me as their aide.

The past few months I have been teaching them about the 50 states of the USA, starting with the Midwest (my home region) and heading West to California on Route 66!  I think they enjoy listening to me ramble on about random facts, seeing clips about different cities and attractions, and watching me struggle to use the technology.  The first years have a wide range of English levels, but everyone attempts to share their thoughts, and take an interest in what I have to say.  I feel very lucky to be teaching them and watching them progress.

I have also started working with Cesar and we have been listening to some audio recordings about all sorts of attractions and sites in Granada, from the Science Park to the Albaicin.  The recordings are challenging but rewarding and an excellent exercise.  Lately we have been reading about promoting tourism in Antonio's class, seeing examples from all over the globe and learning a lot of slang and colloquial terminology.

Since tourism is on my mind, I started wondering if tourism to the United States, specifically cities that have experienced recent tragedies, have seen an impact on their tourist numbers.  On Monday, a horror struck Boston, Massachusetts on the East Coast of the USA and two bombs exploded at the finish line of the famed Boston Marathon.  Three people were killed and over 150 injured with many having to get limbs amputated.  The hearts of American citizens are aching and it seems like we just can't get a break from these awful and unexpected tragedies.

Events like these can't help but make people hesitant to travel, and I know the Boston Marathon will never quite be the same.  Despite the beautiful weather here in Granada, I can't help but be saddened by the fact that terrible things can happen in the best of places.

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