Moving Abroad in Southern Spain

Moving Abroad in Southern Spain

It’s happening!

2014 takes a head start by taking me West – actually, South-West – to live abroad for 6 months in … ta-da-da-daaaaam… the sunny Southern Spain!

Wait, whaaat?

Yes, yes, yes! I cannot wait to exchange my cold, gloomy hometown Oradea (winters in Romania can be so depressing) with the warmth and colour of Sevilla, the capital of Andalucía region in Spain. I will be stuffing myself with tapas all day, drink freshly squeezed orange juice, go to flamenco shows and do all the other clichés that everyone recommends in their “top things to do in Sevilla” kind of posts. Honestly, I don’t know too much about Sevilla yet, but I’m willing to learn – and what a better way to learn than diving head first into their scenery?

Why are you moving abroad, you might wonder?

Well, I have been fortunate enough to earn a place in an Erasmus exchange programme for students (truth be told, I have been working my butt off with all the projects and exams lately, in order to have good enough marks to apply for it, therefore I am not sure that “fortunate” correctly describes my situation here.), so along with four of my colleagues we’re heading off to spend the next 6 months studying Architecture & Urbanism at University of Sevilla.

We’ve already found an apartment right in the old town (which is, allegedly, one of the best preserved historic cities in Europe), in a typical Spanish four stories-building, with a cute little patio and a rooftop terrace (azotea) where I can’t wait to spend my mornings catching a tan.

It was fairly easy to find such a good spot because all five of us are going to live together so instead of looking for shared rooms in separate apartments, we just asked the agency to give us options for available apartments from previous students leaving. The fact that we’re five also helped in dividing costs, so all in all we got a good deal in an amazing location. Well, hopefully, better not make too many assumptions and wait until we get there.

How does it feel to move abroad?

Uhm, I can’t really express the mixture of feelings and thoughts that wander through my mind. There’s a little bit of fear, mixed with a lot of excitement, impatience and nostalgia for the things and the people I’m leaving behind. I know, I know, it’s not like I’m leaving forever, but the feeling is still there.

All of those blogs I’ve been reading about leaving it all and moving abroad or traveling around the world without any remorse of what’s left behind and all of those courageous people I admire for taking that leap of faith – it’s amazing to realise that it’s happening to me too.

Not that I’m doing anything out of the ordinary – I’m not even leaving my 9-5 job (but that’s because I don’t have one yet) – but it’s definitely something out of my comfort zone. I love traveling, but moving abroad for even just half a year always seemed to me like a far fetched dream. And now it’s getting as real as it can ever be and who knows what’s waiting for me after this experience? Maybe I’ll just like it so much that I’ll want to stay there or move further and discover other new places.

As the day gets closer I’m feeling more and more nervous. How’s it going to be? I have a ton of plans of stuff to do there and I fear that 6 months won’t be enough! What to pack? What to take with me and what to leave behind?

My new room is already waiting for me to call it home. How much will I miss my real home, my family, my friends? What if I won’t like it there?! Sometimes it feels like I’m leaving for 6 years, not 6 months!

How about my Spanish? All classes are going to be taught in Spanish and, although we’ve been taking classes (and watching a lot of telenovelas), what if I won’t understand anything of the academic jargon or the particular Andalucian expressions?

What if I won’t make any new friends? What if we won’t be well received by the locals?

So as you can see, there are way too many questions and anxieties overdriving my brain into exhaustion. I never thought it will be so hard to leave. It’s not the end of the world, it’s just half a year, but my heart breaks into pieces for everything that I’m leaving behind. I cannot wait to come back and have a coffee in my favourite pub! If I wasn’t compelled to leave right now, I think I wouldn’t have the guts to do it anymore. It’s so much easier to just dream and talk about it than actually take the plunge and do it.

And on the other hand… there’s that part of me that can hardly wait to be there – at least I’ll get some sunshine while everyone at home is still freezing their butts off!

I’m starting this blog to document my experience there, to leave a digital paper footprint to remember later on. And why not, let my friends and family back home virtually step into my journey as well.

¡Hasta pronto!

P.S. Your advice on the subject is more than welcome, especially if you went through a similar experience, so please leave a comment below and let me know how moving abroad worked out for you!

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