Sunday, October 3, 2010

Another update

Hello. Well, Andorra continues to be Andorra, all sorts of randomness that goes on here. Life is settling itself out. So, I will try to give you a glimpse of what my life is like now, what I'm doing etc.
My classes continue to go fairly well. Some fun factoids: many of my kids cannot complete sentences, even very basic phrases, one of my students mooned my class, I have one girl who spends the entire class quizzically looking at me, a few who speak neither spanish, french, Catalan, or english, and a few who are just flat-out crazy behavior-wise. To be fair, the vast majority of my students are fairly good kids, who aren't necessarily great at english, or even all that driven but they are overall good kids who don't give me too much trouble. I have a few students who are just fantastic, fun kids who are trying hard and are honestly interested in learning English. It is always very rewarding to teach these guys/girls. I find myself enormously entertained on a daily basis by 14-16 year olds. what a fun/hilarious/kinda ridiculous age. I also continue to enjoy the teachers around me who are driven to help these kids succeed despite the challenges and despite the fact that some of the kids don't seem to be interested in learning. My english department is really fun and strong, and I continue to form a particularly strong relationship with another new professor named Cesar who taught in Texas for 3 years before 1 year in Barcelona and now he's here. His desire for students to get a good education is so apparent and he has been very helpful to me. We got to have coffee last week one morning and he gave me a ride back from Barcelona the weekend Shelly and I went there. Hopefully in the next couple weeks I will get the opportunity to meet some other teachers outside of class but time is definitely stretched.
Now I tutor 3 or 4 students (waiting on confirmation on the 4th) 1 time each a week so that takes about 6 hours total with commute included. I now also sing in 2 different choirs, and when my ankle is fully recovered I will be practicing with a soccer team twice a week. Luckily on Wednesday mornings and Friday mornings I can chill a bit because I only have class in the afternoon. Still, though when you get home at 10:30 at night having left at 7:15 it definiely wears you out. My classes on Monday are my most challenging but that is good cause it means the week gets better as time goes on. haha
Last weekend I got to have a wonderful time with the Wichtermanns who first introduced me to Andorra in 2004! I got to spend some time at their lovely house with their kids (it was their twins' 18th birthdays) so it was very pleasant to be with a family and have lovely home-made food. It was a quick trip as I left Friday night and came back Sunday night but it was definitely fun. This past week breezed by with incredible speed. And yesterday, the 2nd of October, I went hiking with Amanda (one of my roomates), Frieda (another fulbrighter) and we climed Mt. Coma Pedrosa which is the highest peak in Andorra at 2,946 meters. I didn't expect the hike to be as hard as it actually was but it was UNBELIEVABLY gorgeous. I may not get a chance right now to attach photos but I will at some point and some and more will be coming are already on facebook. It has been a nice weekend after a week which definitely tired me out. I had some serious blond moments this weekend. Which reminds me-in, I do believe it's Bulgaria or another central european nation-there is a blonde movement with national holidays and companies that only employ blondes in an effort to fight the stereotype of blondes being silly. For example, they are making a resort island where EVERYONE who works there and on the planes that bring you there are blond.... weird, eh? Anyway, I was definitely scatterbrained. Okay, that is about all the time I have for now, I have spent my sunday washing clothes, getting food, making lunch, and now I'm going to go watch Arsenal play. Next Sunday I can finally make it to church at the Anglican church which shoot be good. :-) Thank you guys for your thoughts, your prayers, and for your friendship. I hope that my blog isn't too boring and check back later for photos. :-)
Peace and Love from the Principality.


  1. Those are some amazing pictures! Sounds like your enjoying yourself...even if you're overworked. We miss you here at Wake! Love, Holly

  2. Hey Mark,
    So I don't want to sound creepy, but I love reading your blog. I am currently applying for a Fulbright to Andorra and it's awesome to hear about someone who is actually experiencing it. Congratulations, Mark. I look forward to hearing more about your experience at "the Principality". Hehe, I love it!

    Take care,
    Lilibeth =)

  3. Lillibeth! feel free to email me if you wanna hear more or talk about it or anything like that. I am very much enjoying life here and was in your exact spot last year! :-) Shoot me an email @ I couldn't figure out how to write directly to you... sorry.