Turning Down a Teaching Offer in Spain…

Santander, Cantabria.

October to June.

It was the opportunity of a lifetime.

It was the opportunity to move back to mi patria, experience a new part of the Spanish culture, and teach English to university-age students. To live among the locals and immerse myself in a new culture with new people in new places. And to get away from all the stress of people asking me what I’m doing with my life now that I’ve graduated.

I was sitting in my unpaid internship on a slow afternoon when I finally got the notification from the Auxiliaries program in Spain that I had submitted months ago. To be honest, I thought that all the spots were filled and I figured if I really, really wanted to move back, I could just wait and apply next year.

And then the email popped up in my gmail and I rocketed out of my seat. My heart danced with joy as I called friends telling them the good news. Three days. I had three days to respond to this offer and then I would be on my way.


A picture of Santander, Cantabria- my almost new home for a year. (Source: https://i.ytimg.com/vi/xTFvou3__hE/maxresdefault.jpg)

But something wasn’t right. For one, it wasn’t Barcelona- the place I really wanted to return to. Second, it wasn’t Andalusia- the second region I would have been open to return to.

Now, I would be lying if I only said that the location was the reason that I turned it down was because of the location. I mean, Spain has such a rich and diverse history that it would be foolish to limit myself to only exploring two parts of the country.

See, I’m always someone who goes with her gut. And in this moment, my gut said stay. Don’t go. For some odd reason, the timing was just off. It was something I wanted so bad, something that made me so happy, but it just did not feel right.

And deep in my gut, I knew that I would have this opportunity again. Why did I have to take this job, right now, when I already moved, I already began the process of making new friends, and (frankly) was already homesick for California? I was not just about to pick up and leave something I just started- no matter how many other people told me that they wished they had this same opportunity to move abroad.


My soul wants more than just Spain, it wants Catalunya.

But, to be honest, if I was being offered this job- in late October after the school year had already started- what’s to say that I wouldn’t have the opportunity in a year? And who’s to say that I’m destined to go back in a different way, with a different profession or with some actual money to make sure that I can

a) actually travel to more than two places while abroad,

b) have emergency money to travel home in case of family emergency,

c) pay off my student loans while abroad,

d) actually manage to get placed in Catalunya so I can perfect my Catalan

I know that I’ll be returning to Spain- whether it’s with the Auxiliaries program, before grad school, during, or after, or just on a whim to live off the grid for a while.  I know that I will also live abroad for a year while I’m young. And I’m already counting my vacation days for an extended stay in Barcelona and Catalunya.

But for now, I stay still. I’m settling some short term roots and am going to make use of the beautiful lands of the East Coast.

So here’s to making it count- DC style.

With fall leaves like these, I really can’t complain about D.C.


10 Comments Add yours

  1. aimeewhite says:

    I love this! I feel like there is a growing pressure to ‘making the most of life’ and ‘living it up’ etc., sometimes (well actually all of the time) you need to listen to what is best for yourself. I think it shows a stronger sense of character in you choosing to stay and wait for what you WANT, than feeling as if you should always be busy doing something else! I’m kinda doing the same as you at the moment; I could be travelling around all over the place, but I’m quite content in my little hometown for the moment 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. vkrivas says:

      Definitely! It actually feels quite nice to settle down and figure what I want before I go traveling around again- especially since I’ve already been so lucky to travel before. Glad to know I’m not alone!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Kudos for going with your gut! And what a strength to have. I feel like in this age of opportunity, endless opportunities, and opinions from all over the place, it’s challenging to get quiet and listen to your soul and what it really wants. A certain peace floods over you when you’ve made a choice for yourself, and in that moment you know you’ve made the right one. Enjoy your East Coast adventures while you are there. 🙂


    1. vkrivas says:

      It’s always hard to go with your gut, but so far it’s really paid off for me. I definitely feel at peace, like you mentioned, and feel settled in already. Thanks for stopping by!


  3. helenanglin says:

    Always go with your gut 🙂 If you really want to go back then I am positive that more opportunities will arrive to find just what you are looking for. Thanks for sharing 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. vkrivas says:

      I’m already looking forward to coming across some new opportunities! Thanks for reading 🙂


  4. Santander is beautiful, but it’s extremely facha…and they aren’t catalán friendly at all. But Cantabria has so many wonderful rincones, you would’ve been okay 🙂 I’m in Bilbao and not Catalunya or València and not too bad off 😉


    1. vkrivas says:

      I’ve actually never made it over to Cantabria but I definitely want to stop by on my next time. I’ve heard Bilbao is incredibly beautiful! Thanks for stopping by 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I really enjoyed reading your post. Even though it was a difficult decision, going with your gut is the best way to go. There will be opportunities ahead – you’ll see your path soon enough. Cheers!


    1. Victoria says:

      Thanks so much! I’m already preparing and saving up money for when I truly go back. thanks for stopping by 🙂


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