Appreciating the Differences in Culture
Sometimes I forget that I’m in Spain. I’m so caught in the moment that I don’t stop and take a breath to appreciate what’s around me. I had a brief moment in my Spanish class conversing with my professor, while culture clashing. Part of lectures include Spanish culture, however we delved into American topics. My little moment of appreciation happened several times with each mini topic of the conversation.
It’s Not What You Thought
The first about gun control. Before, I knew Europe was not the same as the US when it came to guns and their accessibility. I expected the usual statements and questions such as “Why does every cop/person have a gun?” Or “Are all those guns really necessary?” I knew those types of questions and statements would come up, I prepared myself for them. However, I did not expect my professors reaction to the debate that many of Americans are having among themselves about gun control reform. His surprise at the debate was eye-opening. He assumed all Americans were pro-guns. He was close, but there were some Americans who want to change the way guns are bought and sold to the public. His facial expressions throwing me off, just because of how what he thought of Americans being pro-guns was simply not true. We mentioned how this debate has grown difficult due to the increase in school shootings.
There’s No Simple Answer
When my US classmates and I explained school shooting dynamics and tragedies, our professor shared the same level of disbelief most Americans possess. In light, he had a different perspective of preventing school shootings by more strict access to firearms. He saw a more simple resolution by simply not allowing easy access to purchase firearms, but it’s more complicated than that. My professor’s lack of knowledge about the number and problems of school shootings opened my eyes to how different our worlds can be despite the advances in technology and social media. What shakes the lives of many Americans at home, might not be headliners to other countries across the oceans. I had to appreciate the moment, because thankfully Spaniards don’t suffer through the uncertainty of danger while in school. No body should have to.
How My Country’s Differences Made Me More Thankful
As some people feel better after talking about their problems, that was my overall sense during my moments of appreciation. It takes moments such as these for me to step back from the rigorous learning and studying. To discuss different topics with professors, and appreciate where I am and the places I find myself. Spain is a beautiful country with so much to offer in culture, language, and scenic views. In the midst of studying a new language and class discussions, taking a step back helped me to appreciate Spain.