Wednesday night I called a girl, Cris, at 7:30 about looking at an apartment. I met her at said apartment at 8. I gave her the 1st months rent + security deposit and then she gave me the keys at 8:30. Compare that to renting an apartment in the states!
4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms (only 1 shower though)
internet + tv (not sure if there's cable I haven't checked yet)
patio (overlooking the alley and the next door daycare center)
microwave in the kitchen (thank god!)
I only pay 120e/month for my room, + whatever utilities there are, which are divided by person.
In case you don't know the euro/dollar conversion off the top of your head, that equals about $160. Yup. I am paying $160/month to live in an apartment in a complex with an elevator (fairly rare), off a main street with a grocery store and lots of shopping, and only a 5 minute walk from the city center. Which so conveniently passes through the 'old' section of the city, aka the prettiest and most spanish. I think I can live with this!
As for my roommates, they are 2 spanish girls about 26 or 27. I'm not really sure. But Victoria is a french professor at a nearby school, so I'm assuming that makes her at least a few years older than me. Cris is also a teacher, I believe. They are both super friendly, and Victoria is happy because know she has someone to speak English with. Who knows, maybe I'll start learning french!
As for the 3rd roommate, Carlos, he is moving out on Saturday to move to northern Spain to look for a job. I think I heard Cris say a British guy was coming to look at the apartment. How cool would that be? 2 spaniards, an american and a Brit. Sweet.
So Thursday morning was spent packing up my stuff, saying goodbye to José and Rosa from the hostel, and rolling/carrying my 70lb. suitcase up la montaña pequeña that is in between my flat and the hostel. It was pure hell.
And sure, I made it worse for myself by picking the ONE STREET that had stairs. All I can say is that I got a pretty decent upper body workout that day. My shoulders are still sore.
Holy s*** that was the worst experience ever.
Then I unsuccessfully tried to buy sheets and a pillow case at the nearby mattress store. The guy was positive that when I asked for las sábanas, I didn't really mean that I wanted sheets. What would I want sheets for?? I must be talking about a pillow instead.
Just because spanish isn't my native language doesn't mean I don't know what I'm asking for. So I walked out of there a few minutes later carrying a ridiculously overpriced, bright red pillow.
I'm not going to complain though because sleeping on this pillow feels like a little piece of heaven. Totally worth the 28 bucks I paid for it.
So after a hard days work, my little slice of home in Algeciras, aka the eyesore of Southern Spain, is starting to take shape.
Note the $30 red pillow on my bed. Worth it, cause it's a splash of color.
PLUS, *cue excitement*, I have also met Elizabeth, the other auxiliar at my school, and Christine, the only other American I'm aware of living in Algeciras. C wasn't all that reassuring about erasing my initial thoughts on the city, but meeting another American and friend definitely helped ease my fears about creating a life here.
Stay tuned for details of my trip to Cadiz and Jerez this weekend!