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My experience from Canada of my time in Bilbao

21 January, 2011

Hope you are well. I sure am, but missing Bilbao and Valdegovía soooo much. I just wanted to thank you for helping us throughout our trip in Bilbao. I have learned so much from your wine tasting classes and from the people of Bilbao.

The lifestyle in Spain has made me realize how our society in Canada focuses to much on work and is why we are so stressed most of the time. Having more than one glass of wine a day is not typical here at 4 in the afternoon because there are other things to do. I love how Bilbao does not have a McDonalds or Starbucks in site and most of the stores and restuarants are run by local people and families. You get a more personal experience, and the quality is way better when businesses are run this way.

This certainly is not the case in Toronto. The scenery is just gorgeous and the people are so sweet there. Though I did think that people were being racist when I was called Chino at first but our friend who works at the internet cafe below our apartment in Zabalbaru explained to us that, that is how people communicate with others. That was definately culture shock to me when I first heard that.

I also wanted to thank you for showing us your home in the mountains, it is beautiful up there. As well, please thank Unai for the horsebackriding and barbeque and Alfonso and Wiso for taking us paragliding. They were so nice, welcoming and giving. Staying in Bilbao for 1 month at Instituto Hemingway was definately not long enough. The girls and I plan to come back again. But this September I plan to teach in Korea for about a year and I will definately come back to visit wonderful Bilbao and the rest of Europe. By the way, since Canada does not have a soccer team, and is only good in hockey. I have been cheering for ESPANA in the FIFA world cup. I bought the Spain jersey and will be celebrating on Sunday when they win the world cup! Please keep in touch.

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