Ok screw writing in order – I have a job! Well, I have an offer of employment for July and then potential/probable employment to start my training September. Yes it’s teaching English, and the July contract is working at a summer camp a few hours a day for four weeks (for a rather decent packet I am delighted about) and from that the boss decides how he feels about me and voila, job or no job. But I am happy at least to have an offer of a proper contract – even if it is only July I am with them, it means I can get an NIE, open a bank account, therefore get a mobile contract (pay as you go is simply awful, I feel like I’m 12years old again) and it’s all got the ball rolling job wise. It rolls on perfectly too after I finish au pairing and is literally half hour walk/metro ride away. And the managers and director are all brilliantly bonkers. So I am stoked. To put it Australianly. That was the Actual News!
So I’ve left it quite a while since my Valentine’s Day blog, but I have been very busy, far too busy to do what I always intend to and log it all here. So I will start at the beginning, as usual. The weekend 16th Feb Javi and I went to Sansan to visit the Nana – it was a lovely weekend – lots of food, lots of drink, hotel was very nice (several magdalenas for breakfast, I’m sure we were only supposed to have two of the six that were laid out in the cute little breakfast room but hey, we stashed the lot) and Javi met the nana gang haha. Was very amusing. As usual we had gorgeous weather in Sansan and as usual I felt like I was at home. Can’t fight that feeling. When we were with the gang it was the first time in my 25 years that I had an actual conversation with my dear Luisi (one of the nana gang who adopted me about 24 years ago) to both of our delight – it was actually wonderful to be able to chat with her and not just smile and wait for Nana to translate. She was so happy that we could converse and my confidence regarding my Spanish soared. Smiles all round.
The Tuesday I met fellow Brit Nikki for a quick drink and the Wednesday had an intercambio in Bilbao. This was Ines’ birthday so in the morning we (being me and Ana) gave the girls an amazing breakfast of waffles, yoghurt and strawberries IN BED and then off to MacDonalds we went in the evening after school. Ines loved my presents – a new drawing book, some jewellery pieces and some pastels, so that was quite nice. She had a good day and evening bless her. 10 years old now, big girl! Since she’s turned 10 I refuse to dress her and also have ‘taught’ her to do her own hair while she’s in the shower. Teaching this girl some independence! The Thursday I met Dani in Portugalete and we had a nice couple of pintxos and walk – it was so warm it felt like Spring had arrived. AlthoughI never hold my breath, the weather here is pretty unpredictable. Dani is one of those people who is very encouraging with my Spanish, so it’s always nice to see him as I come away feeling a bit better about my abilities, but not pressured that I’m not fluent. That evening I met Lucil for a quick drink which was nice as we hadn’t seemed to have seen each other for a long while, a catch up/rant about the woes of being an au pair was needed, hahaa. The Friday 22nd was Ines sleepover and surprisingly I really don’t have much to say on it. It was a good night. From about 6pm we had 20x 10year old girls (only 15 stayed the night) and Ana did a fantastic job of devising and leading loads of fun outdoor games, and regardless of it being absolutely freezing, the kids loved it. Lots of water and running and I happily assumed the role of photographer. Lots of pizza, fizzy drink, chocolate and sweets later I went to bed at about 11.15pm – not bad at all! I could hear the girls for another couple of hours but hey, they’re there to have fun, it was cute. And no one woke me up in the morning so I had a lay in till about 9.30 as I’d been asked to stay to help till 1pm so I was sleeping as much as I could! I eventually got to Javi’s at 2pm (with a little extra money from Ana for helping, much appreciated) and we chilled for the afternoon before he took me to Abando in Bilbao for romantic dinner. I wore a dress and everything. Felt nice to dress up for once! We hit a few bars after and got a taxi home much much later. A very enjoyable night with my beautiful beautiful man. I’m such a lucky girl. Sunday was an official PJ day. Lovely. Well, until I had to give the usual class at 7pm, but hey, PJs were firmly on until then!
The next Tuesday (so we’re at 26th Feb now) I finally met an au pair I was supposed to meet weeks ago but we’ve never succeeded, in Bilbao. Very sweet girl, seems to be a copy of Lucil! Has the same amount of kids here and a cuidadora to help, comes from the same area in France, did an erasmus year in England and wants to do the same kind of thing in interpreting. God, are all French people so studious and motivated? I’m impressed and a little jealous. I’m brilliant at making plans but I make far too many and then can’t decide which one to go with and then think of something else I can do and then waaaah, there’s too much going on in my head! I need a mental sieve. Yeah.
On the Thursday I met Lucil and three other girls in Bilbao for brunch. We were one English, one French, one German, one Swiss and one Polish. Anyone guess what language we spoke? Yeah I thought maybe Spanish but nope, completely English. Was so odd for me, I don’t think I’ll ever get over the English thing over here. Nice girls though and a nice cheeky brunch. Javi had a spy who was in the same bar take a photo of me, which he showed me later, hahha. Very funny.
So that weekend (2nd March – March already?! Jesus it was 2000 a minute ago and everyone was freaking out all the computers and electronics in the world were going to stop, now it’s March 2013?) Lucil and I went to Santander to visit Emily. What a fun weekend. I don’t need to tell you there was much food and far too much drink consumed, but we had a ball. Dancing, walking, beaches, crepes, amazing stew thing, hangovers – fun times. It has suddenly hit me that these two girls will be leaving in June/July. I’m not too happy about it. I need some girlfriends over here! Oh the only bad thing to come of the Santan visit was my camera broke. Joint effort between me and Emily dropping it. VERY upset but I’m completely surprised I haven’t cried or shouted about it yet. But my camera is my third hand so I need to replace it asap. I have seen the same model in a shop by my house for cheap so guess I’ll just have to suck it and spend some money, argh. Before my generous boyfriend takes the matter into his own hands and buys it before I do!
Last week I started a new class with a lovely lady named Ruth – she wanted one hour a week just having conversation in English (paid) and she is very very nice, good level of English and also really interesting to talk to, so that was cool – although literally as I’m typing this she’s just sent me a Whatsapp saying she now has to work 10-6 so looks like I’ve lost that class, dammit. Argh. Well, tomorrow instead I will meet Nikki and Dani for a drink and am meeting Leire on Thursday too so she’s a good intercambio. Back to last week – nearly missed out the important bit then! – Thursday I went for an interview/chat with the director of an English academy over here that has lots of interesting projects and opportunities and progression routes for their teachers, and after an hour and a half with him and his two Scottish/Irish managers they offered me the July position (see top of blog for details) so I came out of that office floating. Not really had that feeling before but it really is true – you feel a little giddy and floaty and like you’re bouncing when you walk and you want to hug everyone you pass. Minus the smelly homeless man who tries to grab your ankles. But everyone else! Result!
This weekend just gone I went to my Saturday morning class, 20minute walk away, at 10am to find no one was home. At all – shutters down, everything locked and dark. Er ok. Later she said she thought she’d told me they were going away and apologised profusely. Oh well, I was showered and up and ready for what turned out to be a gloriously sunny, warm day. I then walked to this English academy’s Saturday school with Javi as the director had invited me to come have a gander so also came away from that feeling floaty and happy. Javi had a family birthday meal so I left him to it and went to Portu with Lucil, Dani and Eder and we ate and drank our way through various bars, sitting out in the sun – was just lovely to feel the sun on my skin. I then met Javi and the rest of his gang later for a few hours which was nice, hadn’t seen them for a few weekends. Then Sunday we just relaxed, visited a random cheese market that was taking place in nearby Algorta and got fed lots of samples of different cheeses. It inspired us to buy some huge bread and cheese and make our own pintxos at home – yummy and satisfying. As we were walking around Algorta all of a sudden a car very close to us on the path was bibbing and the windows were being banged on very hard – was my girls driving back from visiting the grandparents – surprised they didn’t break the windows really! Hehe, cuties.
Now where are we, Tuesday! Is it Tuesday? Nope, my computer is telling me to not be a twat, it’s Monday. I tried to find my way up to the top of Mount Serantes this morning. It’s the mountain over the other side of the river in Portugalete, but I couldn’t find a way up which was stupid. I really wanted a day of green/no cars/concrete pavements but ended up wandering completely aimlessly through Santurzi, which isn’t an amazing town. I admitted defeat after two hours and came home for lunch, stopping to buy some strawberries on the way, which I will devour just before I pick up the girls.
Ok, fingers are starting to cramp so that is about it for now folks, hoping everyone is well in the UK and I’ll blog sooner next time! … promise…