Today sitting under my version of Abuela Willow (pocahontas fans?) I have a lot to be thankful for. I lived one of my adult dreams this past year: Moving to España/and teaching English somewhere in the world. I also learned that the love and life I see in children motivates me & makes my heart happy, which has inspired me to stay a second year here in Spain and specifically in Galicia. I admit I haven’t had a year of roses and complete bliss, because both my body and my mind have had quite the time adjusting to this new part of the world. The fall and winter, and even spring put my body’s defenses in overdrive and I still lost the battle several times (at least once a month) to some cold or flu. Damn Southern California dreamy weather didn’t prepare me for any of this. The mind, my mind ever traveling even when I consider myself settled or immersed for a time, also has challenged me in these almost seven months. My heart wants to be happy, but my mind worries about future and even recounts the past to me in my dreams, as I am only human afterall. “But worries? You have worries while living the life in Europe?” But of course.
Who do I have in my life as support, as forever friends or soul partners these days. . . if I keep leaving? Can I even blame them for not checking in more? Probably not. Sometimes, I think I connect with people for a season, just a summer, or just a holiday, or just in the period of my early twenties, or late twenties. . . It’s like my relationships have expiration dates, including my friendships. But Universe Knows Best right?
We are constantly encountering people that teach us something, for a time, and then we move on to the next season, to encounter the next friend/lover/teacher.
That’s what traveling has taught me. There are more goodbyes than “Nos vemos prontos/see you soons”. . . and this is okay. This is my chosen path right now. It’s emotional at times. It’s ever-changing. But it’s for now. No one knows what’s coming. I surely don’t. Some traveling gypsies settle and put down roots. I just hope I will know when that time will come for me. For now, I know I will live and teach another year in España, and I will begin to travel para conocer más de Europa in these summer months. Come July, I’m catching a plane, train or automobile and traveling the continent. I have a few places in mind and heart that I cannot wait to visit (hello Rolling Hills of Austria, to name just one) and that’s an exciting thing.
I got a head start with a week of travel to Nederland this past week. I must say, holy hell the Dutch are a tall people. Even on bikes, even while seated, they are TALL. I loved their capital city of bikes (watch out though, death by bicycle isn’t cool it’s just death): Amsterdam, where I spent a week feeling all kinds of ooooohs and ahhhhhs. First new country I visited in a couple years. New sights and sounds and ACCENTS! And I made it out to the Dutch countryside too. I wouldn’t mind returning to see more of the quieter and typical Dutch towns and to eat my weight in all kinds of Dutch Cheeses along the way. Seriously, I didn’t eat enough KAAS/CHEESE in that week.
And damnit, I plan to pronounce GOUDA correctly when I return.
But really, what a lovely start to the summer. The Netherlands is a really beautiful place to see in Europe (in the warmer months). Special thanks to my host in Amsterdam who showed me a great time and shared laughs and adventures with me. BEDANKT!! As I’m currently back in Lugo/Galicia/España for the next few weeks, I have the time to reflect. I finished my 6 months of teaching and have a few weeks of downtime for private English classes and to live like the Spaniards do. Vino anyone? Siesta anyone? No but really, wine in the afternoons is going to be a regular thing for me these next few weeks. I deserve it. We all do actually. No pasa Nada. It’s been quite a learning experience living out here on my own.
Now here’s a little RECAP:
Days spent in Europe thus far:
# Copas de Vino/Glasses of Wine had:
No way to know/Un mogollón
# of Sunny days in Galicia since I arrived:
Less than 15
# of Sunny days experienced outside Galicia:
More than 15
# of Family members/friends that have visited me in España:
España, Portugal, The Netherlands and Switzerland (for 2 hours of wandering)
Capital Cities Visited:
Other Favorite Cities Visited:
Some new places I hope to visit this summer:
Gratitude and Love and may you be open to a season with your friends/lovers/teachers.