Just booked a trip to Madrid, where I’ll be spending Easter with my friend Neil! I’ve known Neil since high school, so it’ll be a lot of fun. And I’ve been feeling really bad about not getting to travel a lot while I’ve been here, so it’ll be really nice to get out of the residency. So far I haven’t confirmed how I’m going to get there, but I’ve booked my room in a hostel for $74 for 4 days, which is definitely not a bad deal. Granted I’m sharing a room with 10 people, but I plan to spend as little time in the room as possible.
Also tomorrow I have my internship with the primary students for the first time, so that’ll be fun. I’ve made it very clear that I don’t want to teach, I’ll just be going to help with the English pronunciation of the songs. The teacher said the kids are excited to meet me, so it should be fun!
Today we went horseback riding as a group activity. It was alright. They had us ride around in a circle for an hour, then we went on a “trail ride.” However, there are really no trails in Valencia, so we walked on rocks and dirt and side-swiped bushes over a peaceful landscape of litter. Plus they asked about our riding experience, which meant that since I took riding lessons for a few years, I got the most difficult and hard-to-handle horse. I almost got bucked. Then, I got sunburn. I considered putting on sunscreen before I left the room, but I didn’t know beforehand that we were going to be in direct sunlight for 3 hours. So while my legs are still purple from the severe sun poisoning I got last week, my arms are now a nice shade of tomato. The Spanish sun has not been kind to me.
Not much else to report. I’ll have to make sure I finish and turn in all of my assignments by Wednesday before break starts on Thursday, but I’m not overly concerned about it. I can always catch up on sleep Wednesday night. I honestly feel a lot happier now that I have this trip planned. Although I fully recognize that I’m grateful just to be here and to have this opportunity, I want to see more of Europe, and I’ve had a desperate nagging the last week or so that I’m running out of time. I know logically that I can’t go to class, write 4-6 essays a week, go to my internship now 4 days a week, plan lessons for my students and travel around Europe, but I’m so afraid that I’ll go home and feel like I didn’t take full advantage of the opportunity. Being here has given me a newfound sense of adventure and a love for travel, but I know that in reality I won’t be back in Europe anytime soon. When I get home I’ll be working for the Summer, then saving money for a car, then saving money for a keyboard, then saving money for a laptop (which died 2 days before I left for Spain, if you wanted to know what poor timing is), etc. Then I’ll be paying off college and looking for a job in the music industry, I just want to make sure that I fully take advantage of this opportunity, because in reality, I don’t know if I’ll have it again.
If you’ve never been to Europe, get here. Somehow, just get here. It really is life-changing. And not in the snooty “I’ve been to Paris and London and Amsterdam and now I’m worldly” kind of way that some people can get, but in a way that you’re changed by experiencing different cultures, seeing different ways of life, and meeting people that have grown up in completely different circumstances than your own, but really aren’t that different at all.
So that’s my 12:34 am reflection. Hope everyone back home had a good day, and have a good night :)