I am teaching in South Korea, and likely to stay there for some time. But next year, or in a couple of years, I don’t know.
Let me tell you something. I love Madrid, because of its cultural and social life. I speak Spanish very well, and so when I lived in Madrid, a decade ago, I had tons of friends. I had a rich social and cultural life, but barely made enough through teaching to make ends meet. There were a couple of times when I needed a little help from home.
I have been back since, but mostly for holidays. Last year, I went to Spain again, to a city of 80000 people. The inhabitants were a lot cliquier and more reserved than in Madrid, but I made some friends through a wonderful creative writing group. The school did everything legally-I got a CONTRACT which you don’t always get in Spain, and I was paid on time at a relatively high rate. All classes were inside the school! The school said I only needed to do an hour of prep per day, since most classes were after 3 p.m. But the management was so bureaucratic we ended up doing prep from 9 a.m. till 1 p.m. and then doing our teaching from 3 p.m. till 10. With 30 teachers in a small space, things got overwrought. I got annoyed (I wasn’t the only one) and it’s probably why I was fired after 3 months!
I had lots of adult students, who were very satisfied and devoted. The management said so, and those students treated me to farewell parties.
I am in Korea, in a town with limited social life. I think that’s why I miss Spain, particularly Madrid. I am satisfied with my schools, I may stay in Korea more than a year (especially if I can get a transfer), but I do dream of Madrid.
It’s the social life, the friendly people, and cultural stuff. I find that in Madrid it’s easy to have devoted friends. But students there can be snobbish and judgmental and I would probably have to teach in more than one academia.
I think I would want to go to Madrid with real savings 10000 pounds? because then even I didn’t get a job I d be allright.
But I feel that if I went, I’d end up in a dodgy school that doesn’t issue contracts. The sort of school that asks students everyday "Would you like to have a different teacher?"
Have any of you managed to live in Madrid for a year more? Did you get to teach and still have a good social life?