Friday, May 30, 2014

Dear Spain...

Recently, I was approached by a charity volunteer on my way out of Starbucks. I don't like ignoring people, so I usually start speaking to them in English. About 75% of the time, the unexpecting person simply smiles and says, "Oh English," before backing off. Unfortunately, it didn't work this time. We got to talking about what I'm doing here and if I'm staying for the next few years. Upon telling him that I'm going home, he said, "Why are you leaving us??"

Why am I leaving you? Well, Spain, I don't know how to put this lightly... but...

It's not you; it's me.  
I think we should see other people. 
I'm just not ready for a life-long commitment. 
You’re perfect in every way, just not for me. 
I need to focus on my career. 
I'm still in love with my ex. 
My dog doesn't like you, and I value her opinion. 
We can still be friends, right?

I'm not exactly breaking up with Spain... but dadgumit... it feels like it. Nearly every classic breakup line expresses how I feel about Spain right now. 

Not only do I feel like I'm breaking up with Spain, I'm also getting graduation goggles for Spain.

What are "graduation goggles," you ask?

Oh, my friend... I have so much to teach you.

Once upon a time, there was a wonderful show entitled "How I Met Your Mother." I'll allow you to fully enjoy the series on your own time and skip right to the moment in the episode to which I am referring:

It's the only clip I can find and I can't figure out how to embed the video here (I don't speak Japanese). 

At the end of my time in Madrid the jamón suddenly tastes better. The sky is bluer. Speaking Spanish all the time is wonderful. Not having a car is great because you can take more walks. The Metro is great because you don't have to drive. Your two hour lunch breaks seem like a wonderful way to spend time with your students or having a relaxing lunch. Questionable tapas taste better than ever. The double kiss is how you want to greet everyone. The crazy children seem endearing. The teacher who seemingly hates you suddenly doesn't seem so bad. The long distance from home is manageable.

Robin goes on to say not to trust graduation goggles. They're similar to beer goggles and bridesmaid goggles. I made my decisions with a lot of time and consideration. Although I can't imagine leaving this wonderful place, I also can't imagine not coming home to my wonderful friends and family back home.

Like any good breakup, there will be tears. There will be chocolate. There will be crazy nights with my friends. I'll feel like I lost a huge part of my life. But, slowly, those feelings will be replaced by nothing but good memories. The pain of the separation won't sting as much. Moving on will be bittersweet, but once I embrace it, I'll be reminded of why I chose this path.

1. I listened to breakup music while writing this entire post for inspiration. 
2. I really should have used that next to last breakup line in the introduction with a former boyfriend. Seriously, Maddie knows what's up. 
3. If you Google "new beginning quotes," you end up with a bunch of quotes that are very obviously about breakups.
4. I'm super excited about teaching Spanish next year!
5. I finally booked a place to stay in London.
6. I put a deposit on an apartment in Jonesboro this week.
7. I'm surrounded by authentic Spanish material, but I don't know what to take home with me to use in my classroom.
8. I need to Sykpe some of y'all back home to offset graduation goggles. Shoot me a message and let's have a Skype date, please!!!
9. Someone has dialed the wrong number and woken me up in the wee hours of the morning twice in the last week. I'll learn to sign out of Skype before going to sleep eventually.
10. No more two hour lunch breaks! Summer schedule begins on Monday! School gets out at 1:30 instead of 4:30 (no lunch break and one less class)
11. I only have one class left with my professional school students. They'll be allowed to talk to me in Spanish. It's going to be interesting.
12. I can't believe I'll be in the USA in a few weeks.
13. I need to take pictures with all my little students this week. We don't have pictures together.

I'm going to London to celebrate my birthday next weekend. I'm super excited! Diet Mtn Dew and English speakers! Bring it on!!!

Until next time, friends!

Love from Madrid, XOXO,

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