So much has changed in 3.5 weeks. I arrived in Spain almost exactly a month ago. I am now working and I have my own room with Spanish roommates. I love my neighborhood, although I have not entirely explored it.
In later posts, I will regale everyone with advice on how to track down lost luggage, and how to navigate speaking with a pharmacist and going to the doctor. But for now, some information about what it is like to begin working here in Madrid.
As for the program, The CETS course is over. The two weeks course is very involved, but in hindsight I think the program is helpful for instructors to prepare classes and understand the teaching methodology at Learnlight. (For those who don't know, Learnlight is the education tech company that CIEE work abroad interns work for during the program).
This week is our first week out in Madrid navigating public transportation. It is tiring, but I already feel like I understand the city better since I spend a fair amount of time going from one client to the next. I was late in getting my metro pass, so my public transportation experience was a bit stressful for a while. Note that if you are over 25, public transportation outside of Zone A will be more expensive. But, if you have to teach a class outside of Zone A, you will receive a small bonus for that class - meaning that you earn a few extra euros for traveling so far.
I must say that I get a certain amount of satisfaction after a long day of rushing around the city. It is so different from my "normal" midwestern life. This experience is different from studying abroad and requires a lot more energy (this could be because of all the everyday adjustments that I have made. I'm also not 20 years old anymore). But, I am taking joy from the small accomplishments that I make everyday. It's the little things that need to be celebrated.