I believe life is too short to speak one language and stay in one place. Shortly after graduating from college in May 2015, I booked a one-way ticket to Spain. I spent the 2015-16 school year working at a high school in rural Andalusia, where I worked as an auxiliar de conversación.
Although I originally only planned to stay in Spain for one school year, I fell in love with the Andalusian lifestyle (and with a handsome cordobés stranger one fateful night in a craft beer bar). I decided to renew my contract to stick around for another year and see what else Spain has in store for me.
After two great years in the program, I decided it was time to move onto non-teaching-related ventures—but I wasn’t ready to leave Spain just yet. I got my Spanish residency through pareja de hecho, and now work in content and SEO.
My pre-Spain story mostly takes place in Ohio: I was born and raised in Columbus, then spent three years studying public relations at a college in the rural southeastern corner of the state (Athens if you’re wondering: OU, oh yeah!). I graduated magna cum laude a year early with a bachelor of science in PR and spent the summer of 2015 interning with a startup accelerator in Cleveland before moving to Spain in September.
Like many twentysomethings, my love for travel began with a study abroad trip. I spent part of 2013 studying cross-cultural communication and international mass media in Leipzig, Germany, a city in the former GDR about an hour south of Berlin. I have nothing but good things to say about the former East Germany and still miss it like crazy: this region has come so far in the past 25–30 years, and its people are nothing short of inspirational with their resilience. If you want to see what that was all about (and make fun of my 18-year-old writing), my primitive-looking study abroad blog is here.
Some random things about me:
- I learned to read when I was four and haven’t stopped since.
- Studying languages is my favorite hobby, and I think the US could highly benefit from some kind of mandatory language education. I’m fluent in Spanish, can hold my own in a conversation in Portuguese and German, am learning French, and taught myself to read Russian!
- I can dance my way through a two-hour Zumbathon no problem but can hardly run through the duration of a three-minute song.
- Despite being from the US, I’ve never been to New York (cue gasps from stunned Spaniards whose mental image of the entire United States looks a lot like NYC).
- A few of the (many) places on my travel bucket list are Scandinavia, Belgium, Poland, Australia, Brazil and Japan.
When I’m not working or attempting to decipher the many intricacies of Andalusian Spanish, I enjoy cooking, listening to music, pilates, and meeting friends from all over the world. Thanks for stopping by VC!