Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Another job and Spanish barbecue

(Albarracin - I work in this town)

The downside to meeting so many new people in such a short period of time is that I can't hardly remember any of their names or form very deep relationships with any of them. The upside is that they are all eager to take the American boy to all of their favorite places and treat him to free food.

I've started teaching at yet another school in Teruel at night. This will effectively increase my income by 1.5x, so I'm happy about it. There are almost a thousand students at the school, most of which are older than me (some twice my age). They are all there of their own volition, which makes teaching them all the more easy and enjoyable. And a lot of them are surprisingly good at English. I've had some of my deepest conversations in Spain in the classrooms there. Language isn't just for simple utility when both parties have a decent grasp of it.

Last weekend I was invited to join David (my roommate) at Pilar's (his lady friend) lake house near Teruel. It's one of the "artificial" lakes that Franco created, from what I understood. This didn't detract from its beauty a bit. The water was a deep jade color and it was surrounded by some of the nicest scenery I've seen in Spain thus far. It was nice to just sit around and enjoy the breeze and relax for a while, until it was interrupted by people tossing rocks at their friend in the water. I'm not sure Pilar's friends are very bright. They are entertaining, if that counts for anything. After narrowly avoiding any casualties, we had the Spanish equivalent of a barbecue for lunch. It was a giant pan full of seafood that was sauteed in a sauce of some kind and then combined with rice. It was delicious. 

Afterwards, a bunch of us played Uno. They were confused that the game wasn't called "One" in the States. I was confused because their rules were much different than any I had ever played. It made the game much quicker and quite mean. I think I learned some swear words I had never heard before. 

This week I applied for the last of my residency papers. I think everything went okay. If nothing else, they got fifteen euros out of me. Now I have to wait thirty days to get my ID card. Hopefully I can still get a bank account in the meantime. I'd like to get paid eventually.

Unfortunately I've been sick the past couple of days and haven't done much outside of teaching and reading. I'm convinced children have a sixth sense about when you aren't feeling well. Some psychological switch is triggered which tells them that this is the most opportune time to be loud and annoying while you're trying to teach. Thankfully I'm not the official teacher, so I can just let her handle the discipline. Maybe teachers should all have their own personal therapist.

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