Gah. So once again, I’ve left it too long and too far between posts, sorry, not sorry, been busy loving life. It’s been three months since I’ve properly stopped moving about, and settled in Sevilla. My oh my it’s a beautiful city, and not a day goes by that I don’t walk through the streets, having to pinch myself and question how I was so lucky to have ended up here. Once again, I have been questioning why I haven’t had that overwhelming feeling of “what am I doing with my life, I’ve made a massive mistake and I need to move home, right now.” But, everything has just been feeling right.
So I have just about finally settled into some sort of routine here… as much of a routine as is possible in Spain!
Monday’s, Wednesday’s and Friday’s I have Spanish Class in the mornings from 10h-1330h. This has been progressing nicely, and with my move to an apartment with an Argentinian and a Spaniard, my conversational Spanish has definitely been improving. We have just started to work on C1 level grammar work, but my perfectionist need to ensure I have a better understanding of more basic principles has me refreshing just about everything. A funny mistake I have made in Spanish class just this week- I was explaining about a recent new Spanish friend who I have met a couple of times now as “Intercambio” or language exchange- I had explained in my Spanish Class that I think it is more about language, than anything on a romantic level. My teacher happened to prey on my choice of synonym for language; lengua at this stage- which also means tongues. So essentially I explained that I was meeting this new friend for tongue practice… golly gosh.. Me puse roja!
Monday, Tuesday and Thursday afternoons I have private English classes. I have been learning a lot more not only about Spanish grammar patterns (when students translate directly into English with a Spanish grammar pattern), but also gives me better insight into the English language. It makes me so grateful that I grew up learning the language- not having to think about why we use “does” in question and to emphasise the affirmative. But it has me thinking about my level of Spanish- will it continue to improve or will it eventually have to plateau when I leave a Spanish speaking country? Another funny slip up with one of my tattoo parlour students- in Spanish, there is only one verb for do/make; hacer. But in Spanish, you say yo hago amigos, meaning I make friends. So, when practicing the past simple, one of my students said “On Saturday I did some new friends…“, and being very mature, the student enjoyed muchly my explanation of why he shouldn’t say this.
Thursday mornings I have pottery classes, with the other me, Georgia, from Australia. It’s my first attempt after a Cleopatra head in year nine with pottery, and I absolutely love it. The tables are amazing, and it’s so soothing and relaxing to watch the clay spin around and around, very meditating. The classes again are all in Spanish, so great practice, but I have been playing translator a little for Georgia. Sometimes it’s a guess, but other times I’m a little impressed with what I have managed to pick up in the time I’ve been here.
Outside of my more concrete, regular plans, I have been setting up my little on-the-side business, georgARTdaniel, a collection of anatomy art or anARTomy drawings that have been earning me a little extra pocket money. I currently have one cafe/bar/shop selling and displaying these paintings, have been working on a design for a cafe- for them to put on their flyers and advertising (maybe even on their wall at some point!), and have been talking with a few others about doing some displays on their walls. So painting, drawing, bargaining prices of scanning and printing with the local copy place has been taking up a big bulk of my time at the moment. I have been talking with another artist here in Sevilla about getting into some Markets here, which is a little bit more difficult with the bureaucracy, Visas etc. But for more information, check out the instagram page and website!
I have been deep into Spanish Spin classes and Spanish Bikram yoga classes. I have been going to Intercambio (language exchange) on a regular basis to improve my conversation skills. I have been going on random walking tours of the city, attempting to learn as much as possible about this beautiful country and city. I have been eating tapas and drinking wine. I have been exploring the cities around Seville on the weekends where possible, and learning more about Andalucia. I have finally picked up my Residency Card after waiting in the excessive queue at the Extranjero office four times (typical Spanish style). I have been catching up with friends and exploring the beautiful Christmas lights that have been put up throughout the city. This city continues to amaze me and give me shivers down my spine every time I step out my door. There are some things that I believe I will never become accustomed to, no matter how long I live here- the inability to flush toilet paper in most places, eating dinner at 11pm being considered normal, the sheer number of people that smoke, the surprising lack of green spaces in the centre, understanding that the difference between ahora (now) and ahora mismo (right now) is a matter of hours, my need to add in nicities into the Spanish language and feeling overly rude every time I don’t (but actually sounding like a normal Spaniard…). But. There are SO many great things I am learning about myself, about the culture and history, the Spanish way of life, managing to be relaxed even in supreme periods of stress, meeting and learning about people all over the world. It has been, and continues to be, a dream on a daily basis.
Recently, I have been catching myself smiling like a quack when I’ve been walking down the street alone, surprised by how happy one person can be. I sound like a total corndog, and it’s not to say that things haven’t been challenging here- I have been homesick, missing all of my friends and family and feeling guilty for not talking to everyone as often as I am meant to, of course feeling useless with the preparations with my sister’s wedding, missing somewhat the regular routine from my life in Australia, and dearly missing my puppy (wishing I had a canine friend to attempt to fill that void), but I know that all of these feelings will come and go like waves, and I have been having the time of my life. With Christmas time coming up, I know these feelings of missing home will strengthen, and I will be feeling extremely nostalgic, but I am super excited for a Winter Christmas in England!