I think moving to another country was scarier the second time around. Cities are daunting to me. Terrifying even, if you’d have asked me last week. I’m used to little south-coast seaside towns/small cities at most, so Forlì (Italy) wasn’t such a change. Aside from the upheaval in terms of distance from home and difference in culture, I was going to somewhere small where I could make myself at home. Valencia on the other hand is pretty hefty in population and size. It’s the 3rd biggest city in Spain in fact. It’s big enough to have a metro, 4 universities and an international airport. Yeah, the run up to the move made my knees shake on more than one occasion.
And you know what my first impressions of Valencia when I arrived were? GRANDE. It is very big. Buildings are built big, everything is spread out and there are a really disorientating amount of roads and routes and ways to get around. From my flat I’m able to reach 2 very busy main roads in seconds and I’m sure I’ve arrived home from at least 5 different directions since I’ve been here. When I say GRANDE I also mean really damn hopping cool man, too. Large, way-out, extraordinary. I’m excited and happy and relieved and totally unable to come up with a non-lame translation of what I mean by GRANDE. The largeness of it isn’t quite as scary as I thought. I’ve spent my 4 days wandering and walking for hours on end, there’s just so much to see. There don’t seem to be as many threatening looking areas or gangs of people as in Barcelona or London. The people on the streets instead tend to be old or people with kids. The sun is shining really hard and it’s only February. The metro is clean and efficient. There are bars on almost every street and enough restaurants to keep me happy indefinitely. So far so good.
Now I’m only a slither of a fraction of my way into my stay and homesickness is something I won’t be able to keep at bay forever. I also start a full time job the day after tomorrow, and I do have my worries about keeping up Spanish for 8 solid hours a day. But I feel a lot better about everything now I’m here and I’ve seen how beautiful a big city can be, and I’m slowly realising that worrying gets me nowhere, and my fears are usually unfounded. I can’t wait to write more in detail about what I get up to here. I’ll certainly never have an excuse for boredom.