Just a quick one today as I’m teaching in twenty minutes. I recently moved to Spain, to a town called Aranda de Duero, about 2 hours north of Madrid. It was all a very last minute thing, interview, flight, bus, straight into the classroom. I’ve now been here for about two weeks and have quickly settled into Spanish life and my first real teaching job.
Real teaching involves a lot more planning than summer camp teaching, that you could pretty much wing, especially after three summers. My advanced adult classes, which I really enjoy teaching, involve a lot of planning. I often spend as long as the lesson is preparing and making sure I’m solid on some of the grammar so I don’t give the answer ‘well that’s because it is’. I teach three days a week in the academy in the town and two days a week I drive out to a village called Huerta 45 minutes away. It’s fun getting out into the countryside, even if one of my classes out there is a bit of a nightmare and the teaching space is tiny.
In Italy my favourite part of the culture is aperitivo, so it’s unsurprising that tapas is my favourite aspect of Spanish life. The bars around the town have a Thursday evening tapas and wine for 2 euros deal, which I’m yet to miss out on! As Aranda is a wine producing town the wine is fantastic and even on non-deal day ridiculously cheap. I live in a nice little apartment near the academy with two other teachers and a Spanish physio – it’s fun having a Spanish flatmate as I’ve got to meet a fair few Spanish people through her.
The Spanish way of nightlife is still something I’m getting used to. Going out to your first bar at midnight and coming home around 7-8am is a completely normal thing to do; I’m still adjusting. Myself and one of my housemates Hodel (Irish), have also been to check out a Monday night ‘English club’, held in one of the bars and basically just Spanish people who want to speak English with each other. I was a bit worried at first it was going to be like work, but it was actually very nice to chat with Spaniards who were fairly fluent and had no interest in your work etc and just wanted to chat. There’s also a local cinema that shows foreign language films once a week, they’ve done French and Swedish so far, eventually they’re going to crack and give us an English one to watch! My Spanish is non-existent and whilst I’ve installed Duolingo I’m yet to actually start.
I’ve was trying to be a bit more healthy when I moved to Spain, after the summer of not really watching my health. My cooking is slightly less revolved around kilos of pasta and I’ve cut out coffee from my diet. But wine and tapas are a common feature. I did download the P90X3 work videos that I did a few of in Italy with Steve and have just completed my second week. They’re just thirty minute full body workouts designed to improve balance, strength and fitness – they certainly leave you exhausted in thirty minutes and the coach is hilarious.
This weekend is a long-weekend (wooooo) so I’m heading down to Milan to check out the capital. Adios.