Thursday, July 29, 2010


If my aversion to children could be removed I think I would be the world's greatest babysitter. This claim is based on the realization that I am my own nanny throughout the summer. It's hard to pinpoint the moment I became my own mother, but at some point it happened.

With a full-time job my life is hyper-structured, and the way I bide my time in all of this is much like a mother with a small child. I know I will not always be occupied at work (I find time for things like writing this post and reading everything on the Huffington Post RSS feed), so I plan for that with my diaper bag, sans diapers of course. Instead of Huggies, my tote bag contains several books, my crochet projects, and any other thing I might be working on that could keep me busy when the internet drops the ball. Along with time-passers I have snacks, the most important thing you can have for a child who needs to be occupied for an entire day.

Like any good mother I also plan playdates for myself, see to it that I'm getting 8 hours of sleep a night, and prepare healthy, balanced meals for myself.

This is all just a part of growing up, but if and when I actually do have kids I should be able to put these things into practice for someone else. Until then I'm just getting lots of practice and trying to avoid tantrums.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

So Close, Yet So Far

Two semesters are all that stand between me and my degree, but I have to say that college is really getting in the way of me getting jobs right now. Not that I have experienced a deluge of offers, but this week I have experienced the sadness that comes with turning things down or being so close to eligibility but ultimately unable to receive an offer. Let me explain.

There are these beautiful things in Spain called language institutes where the only qualification for teaching English is to be a native speaker. Thus I am overqualified, considering I study English and almost have a bachelors degree. When offered a chance to work at a camp this summer that could possibly turn into a more long-term job I had to turn it down because I needed to come back to the employer that had already hired me and finish school so that I could actually get my degree before I started paying off my student loans. The other Belmont student who was in Spain with me leaves today for the camp because he was in his last semester while we were in Santiago. Jealousy does not begin to describe what I feel.

But Spain is not the only place where I'm almost needed. A member of my family recently got a job as principal at a high school here in Tennessee and needs to hire a new Spanish teacher. Her one applicant is admittedly not fluent in Spanish and didn't even study it in college. The only thing keeping me from applying: those two semesters I lack. I'm basically 10 months from being qualified. Talk about wrong place at the wrong time.

I realize that this is life and that these jobs will still exist after May 14, 2011. It just hurts so much to be so close and seeing these opportunities to move on with my life that I can't snag just yet. The hopeful part of this: there is confirmed life after graduation.

Friday, July 9, 2010

America the Best Place for Dating?

I just read an article from that said America is the best place for dating. While I understand the things this girl mentions, I can't help but note that the same things apply in Spain and that I had much more luck there than I've ever had here (although my dates were with Saudi Arabians and not Spaniards, which I don't have time to go into and realize could seriously skew my perceptions of dating regardless of the country). We'll take this reason for reason:

1. Good Education
In America, we have to pay (often big bucks) to go to school. In Spain, the public universities were favored over private, and the government leaves little to be covered out of pocket. If you don't go to college there you're one of the minority, and even after finishing your degree you will likely find job-hunting difficult because everyone has a degree, just like you.

2. Reliable Economy
The Spaniards have their own economic crisis, but the country seemed relatively as economically stable as America. Unemployment rates are high both places, and the abundance of free time seems only to be amplified by the siesta (sleep is not required or often taken). So if we're saying that the economy boosts free time for dating, I think Spain wins.

3. So Many Parks
In Nashville we have our fair share of parks, but Santiago was no different. And there every park was within walking distance, eliminating the hassle of getting in the car, which can discourage the trip to the park and allowing more time to walk and talk with your date.

4. Open-Mindedness
Spain does allow gay marriage, and while my Saudis were from a much less open-minded culture, the country in which we found ourselves did not seem to care much about who anyone was dating.

5. Excellent Music
This one might be a win for America. But a good chunk of the music I heard in Spain was American. Plus, with the internet you won't miss out on anything, AND even living in Music City, USA the big artists often skip us on their tours.

So maybe dating in America is better than in some countries (I've only lived in two), but based on these reasons I think I'd choose Spain.