¡Feliz Año Nuevo! Happy New Year to everyone! Technically it is still Christmas here in Spain because on 6th January the Spanish celebrate their Christmas, otherwise known as Los Reyes Magos. For those of you who don’t know, this is when the Spanish are more likely to give presents as to many of them, the 25th December is just another day off work to spend with their families, eating copious amounts of food. For me this is perfect timing as not only do we get Wednesday off work, but one of my oldest friends is coming to visit me so I can spend much more time with her as opposed to working! The only downside to this late Christmas is that the sales haven’t yet started as people are still buying their Christmas presents – so not only did I miss all the sales in England, but I have to wait for them here! (That’s a first world problem right there).
For the first time in 6 months I went home on 23rd December for a short but sweet 5 days with my family! I was so determined to make the most of this as being away from home for so long really makes you appreciate home comforts. Take carpet, for example – in Spain most places have wooden or tiled floors which, although easier to clean, is not the same as a warm, cosy carpet. The minute I walked into my house, I ran straight for the carpet. (Disclaimer: I know this makes me very weird, but carpet is now a luxury!).
Being home for 5 days meant that I definitely did not see everyone that I wanted to see but very soon I’m home for 2 entire weeks which means that I can definitely have more catch-ups! After a VERY long time without seeing her, I got a long afternoon with my best friend when we exchanged presents and just caught up on life in general – yes we Skype A LOT, but it’s never the same as seeing someone in person.
One exciting/scary thing that happened while I was home was my annual visit to audiology to get my hearing checked. Nothing has changed as per, however as I have now have my amazing purple hearing aids for 5 years, I’m due an upgrade! So in February I will be getting brand spanking new ones which is super exciting – however… THEY AREN’T PURPLE! The specialist gave me the option of beige (ew), black (no) or silver and as the latter is probably the least conspicuous I chose that. In my head I’m trying to tell myself that I need to be more mature and have a grown-up colour – but where’s the fun in that?!
I got to spend NYE in Valencia which was super cool. This year the local council tried to make it more like NYE in Madrid with a big outdoor event. This took place in the main square and there was a DJ on the town hall balcony with confetti cannons (amazing, right?!). At midnight, the Spanish did their traditional thing of eating 12 grapes on each chime of the bell to represent each month of the year. This was really funny as we saw many people struggling to keep eating – it is much harder than it looks apparently! Normally I don’t do much for NYE but this year was so much fun and I can definitely see why people make such a big deal of it when there are events like the one in Valencia.
For now, it’s back to work for my last month in Spain. I can’t believe that soon I’ll have finished my 7 month stint here and it’ll be time to move to Portugal! However, I’m not doing that before a quick trip back home and to Nottingham to see many of my favourite people in Musicality’s production of ‘Anything Goes’ (sorry not sorry for that bit of promo!).