On Leaving Barcelona
September 17, 2010 § Leave a comment
I had this huge idea for a post about being emotional and reflective on my exit from Barcelona, but two days on and with stuff to be doing much of the sadness, disappointment, nostalgia and frustration seems to have dissipated. I feel that this is going to be the most difficult post that I’ve written so far – not because the contents are particularly difficult to explain, rather that my state of mind has changed rapidly with the change of home, language, climate and general day to day needs that I now have. It’s like my head’s on overdrive with all the things I have to sort out; and the tea’s stronger than I remembered it back here. Add to that the aim of not only summing up a year of my life, but doing so in a way that communicates with and benefits you, which is after all a hidden goal of this blog..
So here goes: the decision to abandon ship was cemented a couple of months ago now in Montenegro, and ever since returning from Cazalla at the end of August, I was counting down the days until my return to Oxfordshire. It wasn’t really a difficult decision to make, given that Spain has been becoming ever more a fight to participate in since the financial crisis of September 2008. And with the local situation as difficult as it now is, and with businesses still closing down, unemployment still rising and benefits for many of the four million about to run out; Barcelona/Spain/Southern Europe in general is becoming very difficult for self-employed in shall we say extra-necessary service roles. Add to that the ability to move clients online and reach people on a global scale, that fight to participate is no longer something I need, or want, to win. And so it was that, using Barcelona as a metaphor for life, I left the same way as I came in thirteen-and-a-half months prior – not exactly kicking and screaming but sí sin dinero y sin hilachos.
My last 24 hours were a case in point: a game of eight-a-side football on a full-sized pitch left me physically exhausted yet corporally satisfied, and I was invited to stay later for a leaving beer with the team-mates and made it over to the Chilean house in time for a fantastic meal served on their terrace. We were ten or so and took it well past midnight with three courses and at least three different wines. The next morning I woke up, late, and rode on down to the beach on my bicycle, waved goodbye to a dear friend and continued along the seafront in shorts, flip-flops, 30 degree heat and cool sea breeze – don’t take it for a minute that the negative further context of this story means that this is not a city that affords a good lifestyle…
=== You know what, I can’t actually write this post, rather I can’t finish it. My head is dizzy, vacant, busy, teinated (like caffeinated) and later I’m traveling two and a half hours to the South of England to assist on a weekend Coaching course, then on Wednesday I’m back off to Spain for the last module of my masters, then on the very last day of that masters I’m traveling back to the south coast of the UK to take another 10-day training. I’m actually full, my calendar, my head, my plate. With moving, courses, projects in the future, my focus has disappeared and I’d rather make this good-humoured personal breakdown public than wait for a better post to be completed and miss schedule. I may or may not come back to round off this post, this story, what I want to express. But I will be back on Tuesday with some useful content. Rant over, take care, and speak soon. ===