Tuesday, January 18, 2011
que será, será
The question on every language assistant's mind, starting in November: am I staying here next year?
OK, not every language assistant. Some are definitely going home because their contracts are nonrenewable; others are definitely staying because they're in love with a Spaniard and/or this has become more their home than their home back home. If you know what I mean there. But the choice was definitely on my mind.
Time off, a visit back home to Raleigh and settling back into my routine made the decision easy for me.
I'm moving home next year.
Actually, to be honest, the decision was pretty much made before Christmas break. So why, you ask, am I leaving this 22-hour-a-work-week-living-in-Europe gig to go back to America, where food is processed, the work week is 40 hours, and none of those hours get cancelled because of a strike?
Well... lots of reasons. Life in Europe is still life, first of all. Yes, Bilbao is still awesome; yes, I still love it here. But when you live somewhere, it's not like you are a constant tourist; you are settling in, going to your job, coming home, cooking dinner, watching TV or reading, going to bed. Also, I have discovered that I don't terribly like teaching. Go figure. The kids are still entertaining sometimes and I have another job at an academy in the afternoons, both of which are fine jobs. I just don't dig teaching all that much.
But the main reason is this: I have the strongest desire to nest EVER. This has been the case almost since I got here. In the past 5 years, I haven't ever spent more than 1.5 years at a time living in the same place. I feel myself reaching the end of that stage. I want a dog and some kitchen appliances. I'd like to see my family more than once every few months. And, maybe most importantly, when I went home for Christmas I felt like I belonged. Spending some time away from Raleigh has taught me to appreciate that.
So... what next?
Well... I'll spend the next few months taking advantage of my time and opportunities here. Taste foods I've always wanted to try. Travel around as much as possible. Get to know Basque Country as well as I possibly can in 5 months. In June, if all goes according to plan, I'm hiking the Camino de Santiago. Check that one off the bucket list!
When I move home, I'd like to start pursuing photography. I don't know if this needs to entail an internship, apprenticeship, going back to school, or just starting and seeing what happens, but I'm going to find out. Any professional photographers who read this, feel free to leave tips!
And of course get a dog and a KitchenAid.
Beyond that... who knows?