Tuesday, August 31, 2010

¡La vida es fanástica!

Welcome welcome one and all to the first edición of "¡La vida es fantástica!"

It's been quite a ride so far, let me tell you.  I'm not even sure where to start.

How about the beginning?

I arrived in Spain last Monday (August 23rd).  My flight was no problem.  I, of course, was utterly unable to sleep at all, so that was fun.  I took a taxi from the airport to the train station in Madrid, then took a 2.5 hour train ride to Sevilla--Santa Justa, then a taxi to the hotel, my final destination.  Renfe, the Spanish train company, decided that I should sit in first class because I had 200 lbs. of luggage and looked very tired.  Or maybe not.  But whatever the reason, I got to sit in "Preferencía" as opposed to all the plebeians who were stuck hugging their knees in “turística.”  Not bad, I should say.

So I get to the hotel.  I go and find the desk to check-in with my program and talk to the ladies (all of whom are super nice, btw), get my keys, and head up to the room.  Side note: The members of the program were asked to arrive between 12 pm and 7 pm, so I figured that…considering that 99% of everyone were coming all the way from the States directly, I was probably one of, if not THE, first person to arrive.

So you can imagine my surprise when, while sweating profusely and swearing fluently, I finally get the hotel door open, only to find a dude sprawled out on his back, in naught but his underwear, snoring away, with all the blinds pulled shut.  My first thought was, “Oh no, I hope I don’t wake him up.”  Followed quickly by, “I wonder if he’s supposed to be in here.”  And then finally, “Is this my room?”

Well, as I was slowly and quietly trying to get my stuff settled in the room, he woke up and wasn’t shocked that someone else was in his room, so I figured everything was ok.  Turns out I was right.

So that was Monday.  We spent the next few days doing various orientations to life in Spain and teaching and other important things: everything from buying a cell phone, to a quick review of essential Spanish phrases and grammar stuff.

Our group has about 33 people in it.  While most of them have just graduated from college, there are quite a few who graduated with me, or a year or two before.  They’re a lot of fun though.  It’ll be sad when we all split up and go to our separate cities to teach, but a lot of people are in sweet towns: some near the beach, some near Portugal, some near Gibraltar.  So it’s exciting to have places to go and visit people (and to stay for free).

Ok, here are some pictures from my life so far.

Tad and Katie (former roommate and current neighbor)

Carl, me and Dana

La Giralda y la Catedral

View of the river from my bedroom

La Giralda and the moon from my window

Ok, that's it for ahora!