Monday, 5 October 2015

Touristy Things and First Day

Back again! I think I'll probably post once a week, but thought I'd better do this one now before I get busy at work, become crazily stressed and forget everything.

The last few days before I started work and my parents returned home, we decided to do a bit of touristy exploring, given that usually the idea of a holiday is *not* to wander around various government buildings feeling bewildered. So! We took a day trip to a place on the coast called Luanco, which was lovely but very different to Oviedo with its crashing waves and that amazing salt-water smell you get at the seaside. However, it wasn't quite what you imagine when you think 'Spanish seaside' as Asturias is next to the Atlantic and not the Mediterranean, so the sea was rough and cold enough that despite the nice weather, there were no people on the beach.
 It was a simple enough day, we wandered along the promenade, had lunch, wandered back, took a few photos. But it felt good to not have to do anything. By the time we'd passed the beach again, it had disappeared under torrents of seemingly angry seawater, which smashed against and over the walls, flooding the pavements and threatening passers-by. Again, something which marked us as 'weird English people' was that we didn't start shrieking and running for cover, because it was remarkably like the Solway Coast on a windy day - minus the beautiful blue sky obviously - which is something we're pretty used to by now! (Although this did not take away our annoyance that we all looked windswept and mad in our photos.)

The other touristy place we visited was La Basílica de Covodonga, a
Hogwarts-lookalike cathedral up a mountain, which was pretty impressive! Part of the site was built into the cliff-face, from which you could visit a little chapel and a small museum. Not much to say about this place other than that, although I did take plenty of photos!

That was almost a week ago now however, and today was my first proper day working in Noreña at the school there. Frankly, last night I was a chaotic mess of nerves, if only because the thought of having to catch a different bus from a different place seemed absolutely terrifying to me; I am told that public transport can smell fear. 
However, I spent my Sunday afternoon in Gijón with my two lovely flatmates, going to see a cute little film - English with Spanish subtitles, so not too much to worry about! - called The Book of Life, and then walking along the beach and through the old town in the evening. It was a nice evening, and despite the fact that everyone else was wrapped up in thick coats and scarves, it wasn't cold either! But I digress.
I got to the school just after 10am this morning, and after having been suspiciously greeted by a local cat - which I deemed a good omen of course - I was ushered around the school and shown the classes in which I would be assisting. "A week of quiet observation and learning" I was told, however my teacher (who was absolutely lovely) had not been told of my arrival and with that was asked to introduce myself and talk to all three classes in a row without any prior preparation. Aaaaaahhhhhh!!
 But in a surprising turn of events, I really enjoyed it! One class was more enthusiastic than the others, but all of them asked me questions, mostly "Do you have a favourite football team?" to which I, who has not the faintest clue about football, had to mumble something about which team my brother supports. It was basic stuff, colours, family, pets, favourite music etc., but it was interesting to see other people learning my own language. All of the teachers I have met so far - although don't count on me for remembering their names - have been super friendly, a couple even knew where Cumbria was! There are a few who live near me in Oviedo as well, so they have offered to give me lifts into school a few days a week, which is more than good news. Tomorrow I meet a couple of new classes, and am actually excited! That's all for now, I know that was a lot to take in, but I'll leave you with a few photos from Gijón, whose views were spectacular.
Hasta luego xxx

Laboral Ciudad de la Cultura

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