on growing up.

My heart hurts today.

I just received an email offering me a teaching position in my beloved region of Andalucía, Spain. This means that I have the opportunity to live and work in Granada come October.


I’m not going.

A few months ago, I was accepted to a graduate school that allows me to spend a year studying in Madrid. I enrolled right away.

Now, I am faced with an opportunity that would take me back to the city that I fell in love with a year ago. An opportunity that I cannot pursue. I feel like someone has punched me in the stomach. I could eat my grad school deposit, back out, and move back to southern Spain to teach english and travel.

But I won’t.

My time in Granada was the most exciting, fascinating, enriching, fun, and unbelievable experience of my life. I ache to go back to the city where the streets smell like wisteria, where rich history pours out of every nook and cranny. I long to drop everything and embrace the hippie lifestyle that awaits me in my Granada. But life is about change. It’s about pursuing new experiences, and taking every opportunity to become your best self.


Moving back to Granada would be a dream, but Madrid offers me endless opportunities. I can study things that fascinate me. I will experience a metropolitan Spanish culture that I’ve never before immersed myself in. I will get my Master’s. I will explore new streets, museums, restaurants, and barrios. And, most importantly, I will move forward in pursuit of my personal and professional goals.

When we experience something so incredible in our lives, it is normal to long to go back to that time. I don’t want to regress. Granada made me a better, stronger, more easy-going, more open-minded and more patient woman. I am a different person for having experienced life there. It is time to give another place a chance.

And I can’t wait.

So, there it is. Officially. A move to Madrid in September 2013.


19 Comments on “on growing up.

  1. Just curious, what program did you apply with to teach in Spain? I’ve applied for two different programs to teach in Madrid next year, but as far as I know none of these are giving out placements yet.

    • I applied through CIEE. They accepted the first round of teachers the first week of February. If you’re interested you can still apply until March 15th and you should find out by April, which will probably be earlier than the veeeeeery slow Ministerio de Educación program haha. Good luck!

      • Oh wow I didn’t realize CIEE started giving out placements so early! Thanks for the info 🙂

        • One of the few advantages of the (in my opinion) ridiculous fee haha.
          Keep me updated on your application status. One can never have enough guiri friends in Madrid, especially friends who share a soft spot for Andalucía!

          • I thought about applying for CIEE but I decided I should save the money and try to learn some patience, haha.
            And I’ll definitely keep you updated, Andalucía loving guiri friends are essential!

    • Just read your sweet comment on Liz’s blog; thank you so much! Best of luck to you and your Spaniard. I think talking about it and being realistic is so important, but when you love someone sometimes all there is to do is live in the moment and just love, as you said 🙂

  2. I lived in Granada for a (the best) year from Feb 2011-Feb 2012 and I am now doing 6 months in Madrid working as an auxiliar. Today I bought my bus tickets for my first time back to Granada since then- I am filled with mixed emotions. I also just read your post about falling in love abroad… I also had a love affair in Granada with a spaniard… Ah too many similarities! Good luck with everything!

    • Ahh I love this! I constantly think of what it’s going to be like to go back to Granada after I settle into Madrid, and mixed emotions is absolutely right. Some part of me feels like Granada doesn’t actually exist, like it’s this fairytale place that I fell in love with, but is so incredible that it can’t actually be real…if that makes sense haha. I’m sure I’ll cry as soon as I see they olive groves. Good luck to you too, chica. Can’t wait to read about your first trip back to the city of pomegranates and irresistible men 🙂

      • I was truly surprised to read your post because I agree with everything you said! And I know exactly how you feel about granada, it is my favourite place in the world, it will be the most surreal thing to be back after not expecting to be.. (And a ver si veré al chico…)

      • It’s definitely still here let me assure you! Kudos for having the courage to turn a job in Granada down and pursuing other goals. If you’ve tasted the life here before then that has to be a damn hard pill to swallow!

        • Thanks, Josh! It’s still something that’s hard to accept on a daily basis, but knowing it’s still down there only a few hours away when I need a dose of the magic makes me very, very happy 🙂

      • Wow, I have the exact same feelings about my beloved Granada! It’s been 6 years since I spent a magical semester there, and I’ve only visited twice since then. After living 3 years in Seville and 2 in Madrid, nothing comes close to the feeling I get in Granada. That said, I enjoy the opportunities that life in the capital is able to offer, and there are many things I adore about this city too. I just discovered your blog btw, amazing photos! If you ever want to meet up with a fellow Madrid based blogger get in touch!

        • As a long time reader of your blog, I felt like a celebrity had commented on my post when I saw your name pop up 🙂 I have a feeling Granada will always be my place, but I can’t wait to explore all that Madrid has to offer. I will definitely be in touch, thanks for reaching out, Lauren! Xx

    • Thank you, I can’t wait! Until then, I’ll just have to live vicariously through your blog 🙂

  3. That’s a really courageous decision.
    I’m sure you’ll have many more amazing new experiences. Best of luck! 🙂

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