Wednesday, 16 September 2009


I guess the bumming around, living off my ever-dwindling savings and generally lazing had to come to an end sometime. And the start of the academic year in Madrid seems like an obvious time for it to happen.

It's been good to be here, experiencing the city and life in a foreign country properly for the first time, but reality sets in eventually, especially when I look at my bank balance. Plus, I'm really not good at doing nothing. No, really, I'm not. Stop laughing.

So work it is. Two interviews in the last week and it appears they were both succesful. For one of them, I start teaching at 8am next Monday morning (ouch!) - in a government dept (not sure which one). The company has a 3 year contract to teach English on site to various government offices all over Madrid, so I'm going to be teaching civil servants. Ironic, really. At least we'll have something in common. My first 2 students are "directors" - not quite clear what that means here other than presumably they're reasonably high up and slightly older. The woman who interviewed me said she thought that would be a good reason to send me because I'm "slightly more mature". Ouch. Backhanded compliments all round.

I'm excited and terrified at the same time. I guess this is the crunch. I find out if I'm actually a good teacher. At least I start from the position of thinking I probably am! Having been on training teams etc for a lot of years, and generally feeling pretty pleased with myself when I have trained/taught someone something, I feel I've got a good base. But can I teach English? We'll see. All I can do is my best, which I will.

The kicker is going to be getting up in the mornings, for the first time in 6 months. It's not like I've been in bed til 12 every day (OK, some days) but I also haven't actually had to set an alarm really for ages. From now on, Monday to Thursday, I'm going to have to be up around 6.45. I just checked online and sunrise here is around 8. Still, at least in the dark I might not look as trashed as I'll actually be! So there will be some early nights coming up, which will be very unusual. My body clock seems to have very happily swung onto Spanish time, and bed at 3 or 4 in the morning is pretty normal. Still, again, years of shiftwork mean I'm fairly flexible and reckon I'll deal with it OK.

The other company hope to have some classes to offer me in October sometime.

2 of my 3 private students want me back too, which is good and they've moved their lessons so that I teach both of them 2 evenings a week at their flat for 2 hours. I'm waiting to hear from the 3rd one as to whether or not he wants to continue. His work is pretty demanding so I think it's the timing that will be the issue.

So there we have it. I'll have an income again. Not a king's ransom but a good start.

Now - the third conditional. What's that again?


  1. Excellent - I love it when a plan comes together.
    (not sure if that was your cunning plan a la Baldrick but still).

    The kicker is having to pay back that money you have been living of... ..OUCH!!

    Anyway glad to hear alls well

    PS put you up for an award see blog for details ;)

  2. Awww, thanks.

    Hmm, paying back might take a while longer than spending it did!

  3. Did you really say 6.45! OMG! In the morning! Ouch!