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Madrid, Seville, and Paris, All in Ten Days...

We went abroad to find new things and Siena continues to prove it was the best choice to satisfy the requirement. Not only does Siena offer innumerable unique opportunities of its own, but it also encourages and, in a way requires, a fall break that is inevitably full of further fresh and undiscovered adventures.

For ten days we all went our own ways to explore new parts of Europe. Some friends and I looked under the rocks in Madrid, Seville, and Paris and found things we both expected and were surprises. Amid new languages, foods, and cityscapes we never knew what we were going to find beyond what was marked on our map.

After spending two days in the Prado in Madrid, an afternoon in the Reina Sofia and drinking in/laugh out loud at art from the Etruscans to today’s contemporaries, we were ready for something off the streets main or at least outside the museums. As a result we found paella and fell in love with sangria and spent hours trying to finish it all.

Seville brought us a new pace of travel. Our map had less brightly circled landmarks and so our days revolved around meals and stumbling upon things we didn’t know where there. Our first day we accidentally found the Plaza de Espana and that it was beautiful.

The warm brick complex was enlivened by beautifully colored tiles and all I could think was, why don’t we use these tiles more often in the States? Now, I think all of us have new blueprint plans for our dream houses.

The last leg of our break was in Paris. There we wanted to circle every landmark but then we would’ve been a whirlwind of rushing. We had our priorities and everyone had their first choice of what to see and from there we tried to take it as it came to us. Our walks to the museums were a part of the day’s sights, and so we stopped for our photos and intake of the little things and let the smaller moments wash over us with the same grandeur of the Van Goghs and Monets.

Madrid, Seville, and Paris all in ten days was just what we needed for our fall break. And the short time frame only made it clear that we wouldn’t be able to see everything on this first visit, we’ll just have to go back again.

Danielle Dustin Gagnon, Liberal Arts - Fall 2014