It’s been awhile since I last blogged but things around here have been super busy, and are only going to get busier in the last few months I have in this graduate program. I’ve been reflecting over the last few days how quickly this year has gone. It’s almost been a year since I graduated from Dickinson last spring. Honestly it seems just like yesterday I was sitting in front of Old West (the academic building in front of where all the graduations take place) in the rain waiting for my row to be called to receive my fake rolled diploma (they gave us the real ones after the ceremony).
Now my friends and I are scattered all over the place. Most of them are on the East Coast of the US, but a few are abroad here in Europe like me. I even have a friend currently in South America and a sorority sister who lives in South Korea. And we will continue to scatter as the years go on- grad school, job changes, marriage, etc.
And now I’m in the final stretch of this grad program (thank god!). It’s only a year long, but seriously this year has gone by ridiculously fast. College went by in the blink of an eye. (High school dragged on though, very glad those days are faaaaaar behind me!!)
So much has happened in this year. I had to learn to live with complete strangers (people I only communicated via e-mail/Facebook). I signed my very first lease for the apartment I live in. I had to open my first bank account. I’ve had to grocery shop/cook for myself (which I know my mom will roll her eyes at since she deplores of my diet). I got my bag stolen and had to deal with the aftermath. And all of this in a foreign country all very far from home. All in a foreign language.
I am far more comfortable speaking Spanish now then I first was in the first couple of weeks I was here. However I know my Spanish is far from perfect. I know I still make mistakes but I still can get my point across, which is what matters most to me. However I am so proud of how far I’ve come in the past year. Granted, I do live with American girls so I only speak English in the apartment. But school and just being out and about in Madrid have shown me how much I’ve progressed.
In my last post I mentioned I would be staying another year in Madrid. Well, just to sum it up, through NYU I was able to get a job as an English speaking assistant in this “bilingual” school (the organization I will be working for has this weird thing about using the word bilingual but I’m not sure what else to call it). What’s even more amazing is that my roommate Nicole got placed in the same school as me (and we didn’t ask for that to happen!). The job starts in September so I will be going home for about a month this summer. But I’m very excited about staying another year and about getting paid! We won’t be making a ton of money, but it will be enough to cover rent+ utilities and other expenses. Nicole and I plan to live together again next year (maybe with some Spanish roommates, maybe not, it all depends). I don’t know exactly when we will move because the lease for the current apartment we live in ends in September. We have to talk to the landlord and figure things out with her.
But what a crazy year. Seriously. So much has happened and it’s impossible to recount every single tiny little detail in this blog. I’m just so amazed I’m living in Spain again. I know I said I would be coming back after my year abroad with Dickinson ended. I just didn’t think I would be coming back so soon. And I definitely didn’t think I would be staying another year and working here!!
Speaking of that, I have bureaucratic legal stuff to figure out before I leave to go back home for the summer so that I can stay and work here next year. I’m sure it will all turn out fine, but it’s just annoying to have to deal with these types of things–you know what I’m talking about. The incessant lines, being told to go to a different office/building altogether, having to make appointments where they decide… Whatever, I know I have to deal with it. It’s just annoying to have to deal with it when I have final papers/exams next week… oh and a thesis to write.
But I suppose the real world is always going to suck. Just a little bit anyways. That much I’ve learned this year, that’s for sure. And that there are never enough hours in the day. Sometimes I just wish I never had to sleep.