I feel as if I’ve been talking about this forever but haven’t officially announced to my Petite Crew. Next month I am moving to Spain to teach English and American culture at a primary school. If you know me, you’re probably laughing at this because the two jobs I swore I’d never have were teaching and nursing because they are thankless and tiresome professions. Yet here I am about to fly 4000 miles away from home to do just that. So for the next year, the Petite Crew will be based out of our Europe and figuring out life being Black in Spain.
What I’ll Be Doing
The Spanish government has this neat program called North American Language and Culture Assistants which places American and Canadian English and/or French speaker in classrooms to help students be more proficient in either language. We are there to assist teachers and provide a perspective on our country’s culture. I think it is amazing a country saw their citizen were in need of skills to be more competitive in the global job market and found a way to remedy it. The government provides us with a monthly stipend and health insurance that works pretty much all over Europe.
Where I’ll Be in España
I’ll be in Galicia, which is in the northwestern region of Spain. Some refer to it as the Scotland or Ireland of Spain, as the winters are pretty rainy and the terrain is a bit more lush with green pastures, hiking trails, and rocky beaches. It also sits right on top of the Portugal border and is home to many Portuguese and Brazilian immigrants, making it perfect place to perfect my Spanish and pick up Portuguese.
Additionally, my new city is the home of a few hot springs and rivers. As you all know, I love being close to water. I find to be rather calming and relaxing. And it’s nice that I won’t have to travel to Budapest to experience thermal baths, they’ll be in my backyard!
But What About Coding?
As I mentioned in my gap year post, I’ve been embracing the unexpected more and allowing myself to be okay with the unknown. You see, the practical thing would be to try to get a job at a tech company or state government department with my new skills, but that is not the path I want to take. Luckily, I’ll only be working 12 hours a week. That gives me time to freelance as a web developer and possibly secure a remote position with an American company. That is what I so love about tech. There is flexibility in the field with the option to work anywhere in the world. I’ve also pitched the idea of revamping my school’s website so with any luck that will be approved.
What to Expect from the Blog
This won’t be transitioning into a travel blog. If anything I think I’ll be more inspired to blog about petite fashion, finances, and blackness being there since Spaniards are known to be small people and they have a cheaper cost of living than the States. On top of that, there’s growing tension in Spain and European countries towards African immigrants. So I’d like to document any experiences of racism I experience due to being perceived as an African refugee or immigrant. I think a Black American living in Spain will be an insightful lens and might help other like me.
While Petitely Packaged won’t be a travel blog, I will be featuring my travels across Spain and other European countries. One, my particular reason isn’t often blogged about so I hope to give you all a new place to add to your travel lists. Two, if you’ve stuck with me through all the other changes, travel adventures should be fun.
Currently, I’m in the middle of sorting my belongings out, buying items I’ll need while I’m abroad, and trying to see my family and friends before I jet off. If you’ve lived in Spain or another European country and have suggestions for my Spain wishlist, please let me know. These are exciting times and I’m thrilled you all will be on this adventure with me. I’ve been saying for the last 10 years I would be leaving American and not it is finally happening! Let this be an inspiration to those hoping to speak their future into existence.
Have you ever lived in a different country? Are you thinking about teaching English abroad? Comment below and let me know!