It’s been on my mind for a while. Today, I’m sharing with all you lovelies what I’ve been thinking. Are you ready? Drum roll… I have no idea what comes next. I don’t know what my future holds. I know, That’s a big statement. And does anyone ever know? Really? Sure, I have ideas but that’s it. I’m just enjoying the current, and seeing what happens. I’m not putting much into motion right now. And I’m quite ok with this. It surprises me. Shocks me. Four years ago, not knowing what came next, terrified me. It kept me wandering in Africa, when deep down, (I realized later,) I wanted to be home in the comforts of everything I know. Thought it was more than just not knowing what came next, but the immense fear and overwhelming idea of the “real world” and all that comes with it. You know. The “real world” isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be- bills, rent, responsibilities.
This is what I know: I know places I will travel in April and the first week of May, I know my work ends on May 31 and I have a plane ticket home on July 30. Between May 31 and July 30, I’m free, I’m open to what comes my way or inspires me in the coming months completely free. I like this, I like allowing the wind to carry me, inspire me, excite me but sometimes it’s a little daunting. A two-edged sword. I have ideas of things I’d like to do but nothing is in motion, nothing is planned. I’m still thinking about going to NOWHERE festival but for whatever reason haven’t actually made the commitment to myself (or even to Jessica, whom I inspired and she jumped on it the minute she could). It’s because of this festival and the running of the bulls in Pamplona that made me want to stay till the end of July. I feel I should have plans, I should know what I’m going to do but I don’t like the word should. It implies an obligation that may not really exist or be necessary.
I’ll let you in on a secret-I’ve had a big distraction with my TIE (Tarjeta de Extranjera, basically what allows me to work and stay legally in Spain) and how to stay in Spain legally this summer because someone was silly (insert profanity here) and made most auxiliars in Andalucia TIE’s expire the same day as our last day of work. Pure genius. Explain how were supposed to pack, get our last paycheck, close our bank account, get our security back etc., yeah, exactly! Yet, auxiliars TIE’s in other regions expire in September, such as Madrid. Explain this one, please, pretty please. But high Spanish folks who should be able to, can’t. Yes, I know, it’s because every region of Spain is managed differently and therefore the Junta’s make different decisions but really?! I’ve invested more time researching and going to offices who should be offer a concrete answer who instead, spin me in circles. Yes, I’m trying to navigate the incredible bureaucratic system, that is Spain. So what I thought was a simple as, I’ve been here with a TIE and now I want to turn in my tokens for a tourist visa (which I would have been granted if I had just hopped on the plane to Spain just to visit) and I’m told, it’s not possible. What? There’s got to be away. I still think there must be a way but as it stands, I haven’t got an answer, the only way is to reapply to the program. Ah, ok.
The email from my coordinator to renew sat in my inbox unread for a month. I had no intention of applying until I was basically forced to do it. That is, if I want to stay in Spain legally and have the freedom to travel within Europe. Yeah, being illegal may not be the best idea, right? Right. Ok. I’ll apply but it won’t even be a back up plan for me because if I renewed I’d want to be placed in a new region, to have a different perspective in Spain but guess what? It will (most likely) interfere with me applying to grant me legal status for the 2 months. So I applied. And then unexpectedly, my boyfriend tells me he’s thinking about applying to the program! Say what? Hip hooray! So we discuss regions we’d possible like to live and I alter my application. Fingers crossed it’s not going to cause a problem to get my Authorización de Regreso (to leave /enter Spain, stay legal).
I have no idea what my future holds. I couldn’t tell ya if I’m coming back to Spain next year or getting cozy and settled in California again. I guess renewing the only thing I’ve put in motion but that was by default. I do know another year in Spain would do wonders for my Spanish…
And today, not knowing what comes next is just fine. Just fine indeed. I’m enjoying this ride.