The West Bridgford School

Barcelona Trip 2018

To think we went to Barcelona two weeks ago is crazy! From the surprise tickets to watch FC Barcelona v Cultural Leonesa, to the hours spent on a coach lost in the city, there wasn’t a moment we weren’t smiling or laughing. The Barcelona Trip 2018 is a memory we will never forget!

All the talk and conversation about the do’s and don’ts led to the excitement and trepidation to overwhelm us all; combining this with a lack of sleep (2:30am start on the first day!) just asked for our sanity to be thrown out the window immediately! The coach journey consisted of the teachers and half of the students falling fast asleep, with the others singing and dancing in their seats. However, this came to an end when we finally arrived at Luton Airport.

Once we had landed in Barcelona and collected our belongings, we were on our way to the hostel where we would be staying for the next few days. Throughout the 5-day trip we had two 3-hour Spanish lessons and by the end of the second lesson on Wednesday, we had all bonded with our teachers and never wanted to say goodbye. To think that we were all paranoid about being separated into smaller groups, having to be without our teachers and speaking to fluent Spanish teachers, we ended up loving every second of it. The teachers were engaging and affable by playing charades or Who Am I? whilst also teaching us new words or facts which developed our vocabulary and knowledge on Spanish culture. Furthermore, the opportunity to be taught by fluent Spanish speakers pushed us out of our comfort zone and placed us into a scenario that we may experience in the future. From this, we can now comfortably communicate in a different language without any guidance. It also provided us with a chance to meet new people that we might not have necessarily thought we would have been friends with.

The second day consisted of us visiting ‘La Boqueria’ market, ‘Las Ramblas’, ‘La Pedrera’ and our final language lesson. ‘La Boqueria’ and ‘Las Ramblas’ gave us the opportunity to experience Spanish life for ourselves by enabling us to apply our Spanish skills and communicate with the locals. We then visited ‘La Pedrera’ – a building designed by Gaudi – which allowed us to bond further and relax on top of the building in the sun, whilst listening to a guided tour through headsets.

After our last day at the school, they rewarded us all singularly with a well-deserved certificate and handshake, concluding the end of our encounter with a Spanish school. Whilst having a group photo outside the building, Mr Hannigan surprised us all with tickets to go and watch the Barcelona match that night! Some students were crying, others were laughing, but all of us were ecstatic.

The match was the highlight of the trip for everyone, possibly one of the greatest moments of our lives: we can’t find the words to describe it. For the remainder of the trip, we visited many other famous monuments including La Sagrada Familia and viewed Barcelona from the cable cars. Even though we could appreciate Barcelona as a whole from the scenic views, some students struggled with their fear of heights. However, all of us were brave enough to overcome these fears and enjoy the ride and views. La Sagrada Familia – another building designed by Gaudi – was undeniably outstanding, leaving many of us wanting to return to see the finished work in 2026. Day 4’s itinerary consisted of a tour around the Camp Nou stadium. Whilst not being everyone’s first choice, the experience was one to never be forgotten. The previous evening, we had watched a flamenco show, which showed dancers expressing their passion through powerful choreography. The singers furthered this, which helped to expand our cultural knowledge and appreciation for the performers. And of course, the last day, oh how we never wanted to leave! We had fallen in love with Barcelona in such a short amount of time.

Overall, Barcelona has been the highlight of our school lives, so much so, we all missed each other after an hour of getting back home. We have formed new friendships, existing bonds have strengthened and we have become more confident individuals. We will hold the memories made on this trip close to our hearts for many years to come. None of this could have happened if it wasn’t for the staff from The West Bridgford School who joined us on the trip, especially Mr Hannigan.

Therefore, on behalf of all the students from Barcelona 2018, thank you so much.

By Holly Mounser and Maddie Carnill