With little over 30 days until we head home from our exchange year in Spain I have some things I will miss here in Spain and some things I am looking forward to upon our arrival.
Which should I start with? Spain or Home?
Let’s start with what I am looking forward to upon returning.
– Friends! Specifically sitting poolside or around a campfire or around a table playing euchre but always with a cold Margarita in hand. A homemade cilantro Margarita would be the bee’s knees.
– Grilling! Oh how I have missed my grill. I have been dreaming of grilling pizza on my pizza stone. Kabobs! Grilled Kale. Grilled baby bok choy. Grilled Salmon. It doesn’t even have to MY grill. A charcoal grill at the park will suite me just as well.
– Bacon! Just a little slice with avocado and tomato on a crescent roll. A BLT. An egg sandwich with bacon. Do I even need to say more?
– the Library! With all those books…in ENGLISH! I’ve tried reading on my computer and on the kids tablet but it’s not the same. I want to feel the pages in my fingers, I want to relax in bed without the glow of a screen.
– Clothes shopping! I’ll admit to having too many clothes; especially ones that don’t compliment me or make me feel like a million bucks but after wearing the same two weeks worth of clothes for the last 10 months I’m ready to shop for clothes that look good and feel good.
– My own bed! Soft sheets (I’m buying one new set) and my firm queen-sized mattress. Oh, how have I miss you! The rough, hand-me down sheets on a squishy, sagging double bed just hasn’t cut it.
– a Drug store! The pharmacists here are helpful and friendly but EVERYTHING is behind the counter. I have to ask for everything from fiber pills to ibuprofen to decongestants to UTI medications to pregnancy tests. I’m over having the two pharmacists in this small town know exactly what is wrong with my family or myself.
– Possibilities! Time away from our usual routines and life have me excited about the possibilities of what is to come when we return. The experience of turning our world upside down has me willing to take risks and allow opportunities to unfold themselves. Please let me keep this feeling when we return!
So what will I miss from our life in Spain?
– Outdoor Seating! I absolutely LOVE the plaza’s in Spain. It’s not only outdoor seating at restaurants but the common gathering space for people to come to together and enjoy the outdoors (and most likely friends, but since i have none here I’ll just assume this is a perk).
– Jamon! The trade-off to bacon is Jamon. Thin, freshly sliced is the bee’s knee’s. Jamon is a dried and cured Spanish ham. (Here it is hanging on the walls of this shop)
– Walking! I have really enjoyed being able to walk to the grocery store, school and all around town. I will miss the ability to literally run downstairs and buy that missing grocery item. The time spent together walking with my kids to and from school has been nice (most days; not all).
– Cheap food & alcohol! Oh, how I am dreading the sticker shock of my first grocery trip in the U.S. I’ve blogged about food prices before but last week we made homemade, fresh-squeezed lemonade and a bag of lemons cost 1.19 euros. I’ve found great wines for 1.76 euros and a fifth of vodka is around 9 euro’s.
– Cheap medications! I haven’t kept track of every medication like I have with the food and alcohol but I can buy a 30 day supply of name-brand Concerta over-the-counter for 33 euros. The ibuprofen comes in 600mg and is around 3 euors. Cough syrup around 4 euros.
– No artificial food dyes! I try to avoid them in the states. I know I am using my dollars as votes when I buy non-dye food but I really do like knowing I don’t have to worry that my yogurt has food dye. Yes, the m&m’s taste different but it’s not like I stopped eating them.
–Six-speed manual, diesel cars with hill assist! While I have loved the walk-ability of our town, I have felt free and lightweight every time I’ve rented a car while here. ALL the cars here are manual transmissions and most have been six-speed. (One lone, Ford had no hill-assist and was a 5-speed). I like not hearing the car whine at 75 mph and I LOVE not rolling into the person behind me.
– Uninterrupted family time! We have lived a fairly simple life here. We spend the winter months hibernating together. We watched maybe too much Netflix but we made it through several interesting series and educational documentaries. The girls and I also learned how to crochet over the winter months. While we have a few activities we committed to, we have mostly been free to make our own schedule free of busy work-life-school schedules.