This post is written in english because spanish language is not allowed during my week in La Alberca.
The first stop was Madrid, a bus was waiting for us going to Salamanca. Andy, our MC – Master of Ceremonies-, was at the bus door checking the names and I met my first anglo: Melissa, a teacher from UK, she is a soccer fan. We found easily things to talk, the next one was Jacquira, a real state agent from USA that was sleepy because of the long travel from the USA to Madrid.
We arrived to La Alberca (Salamanca) in a few hours with a short stop in Avila, at lunch time we had to sit down at the table “2 anglos and 2 spanish”, it’s the best way to speak english the entire time.
There are no typical lessons, the method is very different: interviews one to one (50 minutes), two and two groups of discussions, conference’s call, call to call (phone from your room to other anglo’s room), meeting room, performing acts, theater ….hours and hours speaking english with “anglos” very different in order to know their interesting lifes. I have realized that the casting must be hard because all of them are lovely people with amazing stories and experiences to tell us.
Some of “anglos” that I met: DJ from Chicago, a teacher that I consider nowadays my brother, a big showman and a creator of good moments. Mel from UK, she’s a teacher too and she is smiling the whole time and she would like to move to Madrid in a few months ¡good luck!. Ross & Janice also from Chicago,they are a very funny couple that give us the opportunity to discover the Lobster’s dance. Will, a guy from UK without so much money but enough to travel to Spain for understanding our culture and help us with his own language. Robert “The Legend”, a retired musician that played the bass guitar with Michael Jackson, The Boss, Joe Cocker, Elthon John or Tina Turner for giving you some examples of interesting people that you could meet there. All of them came to Spain for free, as volunteers, they only want to learn about Spain and meet new friends, some of them: Donald (Australia), Leah & Gail (Israel), Bruce (USA), Adam (UK), Linda (UK), Abbey (USA)… up to 20 amazing people.
Also you could find spanish friends from different parts of the country or outside the country , Alberto from Italy (my PM colleague), Sandra (Come on! Palencia), Carla & Laia from Andorra or other guys as Héctor, Oscar, Belen, Aurora, Javier, Ward, Mayte, ..all of them with fantastic stories, when you had finished the program you felt that has been like Big Brother (TV show), because you spent 8 days of your life with them.
The environment is amazing, La Alberca is a nice town, you can find more pictures about the village in the link. As extra activities you can go to the swimming pool, go bars, try meat (restaurants), wine tasting, buy gifts to your family or go to the only disco in town.
I recommend this experience to people who need to improve their english level, if you don’t know nothing, please don’t try it but if you have a minimum level you can go for it. You will learn many different english accents of the world. The first days will be hard but at the end of the week you will dream in english, because your brain is thinking the entire time in this language.
I am very pleased to have spent these days in La Alberca and special thanks to Andy (MC) and Sabela (Program Director) from Diverbo, they created the best activities and drived the program in the right way, both of them are very good professionals.
I hope this post help you if you are thinking to try it, the most important is “how to improve your english” but also you receive culture pills and, of course, the contacts you can do over the world for the future.
Sorry for the mistakes I could have written in this post.
Good luck, good life & good memories.