Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Oh by the way!

I feel as though I've been a bit remise in my writing. I can definitally see that I've changed a lot in the past two years.

Two weeks ago I was offered and accepted a position teaching at the Carlucci American International School of Lisbon in Sintra Portugal. I am super psyched about this opportunity and look forward to the next step in my world tour of teaching journey. I'm not sure yet what I'll be teaching although it will probably be Kindergarten or 2nd grade, either of which would be excellent.

I've gone a bit nuts in the past two weeks with my excitement. I've spent a lot of time looking at what housing is available in the area, even though the school has already said they will introduce me to real estate agents to help me in my search when I get there. I've looked at travel agencies to find out what fun things there are to do around the city. I've spent a lot of time just learning about Portugal in general.

It's really funny how I'm different than two years ago when I found out I'd be moving to Freetown, Sierra Leone to teach at the American International School here. Then I was more worried about the school. Now I know that as long as I'm working with kids school will work itself out. Then I didn't really think to look at what my housing would be like, because it was never really an issue I faced living in the states. Now that I've been here for two years I've learned that housing makes a big difference in your life. If you are happy where you live then you can put up with a lot of stuff. If you aren't happy where you live then you don't even have that as a sanctuary.

Another way that I've changed is that this took two plus weeks to post. Two years ago as soon as I found out I'd be moving to Africa I dropped everything and told everyone I knew. Actually, thinking back, I probably told a lot of people that I didn't know too. I think I've generally been a bit more low key in my telling of people this time. Maybe because I still have four months here and don't want to bore people with insesent talk of what I'm going to do in Portugal. I don't really know. But it is interesting to note the difference.

But I am so psyched. I've heard rumors that there are bookstores in Portugal. Not such a big deal? That has been one of the hardest things about living here in Freetown. The lack of accessable literature.

I've been looking online and the pictures I've seen are beautiful. Portugal looks to combine the mountain and ocean landscapes that I've grown accustumed to seeing and enjoying here in Freetown and exploiting those amazing landscapes in a wholy new and breathtaking way.

One of the biggest advantages to living in Portugal over Sierra Leone, because don't get me wrong, I love it here in Sierra Leone, is that people might actually get to come and visit me. Traveling to West Africa is a long, difficult, and expensive experience. One that I haven't felt comfortable asking friends and family to make. But Portugal? A lot of my friends that I've made in the past two years live in Europe, which I've heard is really easy to get around, so I'll hopefully be keeping in touch with them. And my friends back at home will have a lot easier time visiting without having to take a plethora of vaccinations and getting ridiculously expensive plane tickets.

So in case I didn't say it before, I'm really excited about the move. I know that there are going to be things that I miss about living and working in Freetown, but I know that the next two years of my journey are going to be amazing and I can hardly wait for what is in store.


Jessica said...

You're going to love Portugal. It's a beautiful country - especially the southern coast. Wow.

I was nodding very enthusiastically when I was reading what you said about how important it is to like where you're living. Remember my freshman year at Berry? Yowza. Nothing like staying in the library as long as they'll let you just so you don't have to go back to your room. I hear ya loud and clear!

Thanks for linking to me! Next step: COMMENT! =)

<---That Girl said...

Thought I'd drop by again!
You said, "If you are happy where you live then you can put up with a lot of stuff. If you aren't happy where you live then you don't even have that as a sanctuary."
Very good point. My husband tells me that all the time.