MM Monthly Thoughts: October 2016

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Autumn in Madrid, Spain

October is a weird month. On one hand it makes me think of warmer weather and summer coming, on the other autumn leaves and chilly mornings. The curse of having lived in different hemispheres; forever forgetting what season it’s supposed to be! So here’s the monthly thoughts from autumn in the northern hemisphere, to give you more insight into behind the blog!

Destinations of the month:

Almería, Spain – 22 days

Back to work. Ugh. Just kidding, my job has to be one of the best! I’m an English Language Assistant at a school in the south of Spain. Basically, I get paid to talk, which is not something I have a terribly hard time doing… Sometimes the kids are frustrating sure, especially when I know they can do better but they don’t want to try, but for the most part it’s a great job.

Although moving back to Almería was a bit of a shock to the system after a summer away, my Spanish language skills are back on the upwards improvement slope and I’ve taken up yoga in my spare time. Life in the south of Spain is pretty good really! I’m hoping to post a lot more about Almería, Spanish life, teaching English etc. Anything you want to know?

Living in Almeria, Spain

Edinburgh & West Kilbride, Scotland – 5 days

Two out of three days on this trip were actually spent travelling. Spain and the United Kingdom might seem close, but flights can really suck sometimes! I went to Scotland and back (by way of five flights) for just a weekend to go to a wedding. Two nights were spent in Edinburgh and two in the seaside town of West Kilbride. It’s not exactly on the tourist track in Scotland, but I love being able to see the sunset behind the Isle of Arran!

Sunset in West Kilbride, Scotland

Madrid, Spain – 4 days

I hadn’t been to the capital of Spain since moving here in January, which seemed like a bit of an oversight. When I found out I’d need to go to Madrid to apply for the UK Fiancé Visa I figured I would make the trip a more enjoyable one (visa applications suck) by giving myself some tourist days!

I feel like I’ve fallen a little out of love with travel lately (*gasp!*) which I’ll write more about soon, but in Madrid my travel mojo came back!

Gran Via, Madrid, Spain

Lowlights of October

I am well aware that the life I have is pretty sweet, but I think we all have our moments and let’s just say this month wasn’t my favourite. Confession time! A few days ago I felt pretty close to a burnout. For the past couple of weeks I’ve been ill, but instead of slowing down I took on double my normal work load to try and earn some extra money. I know I’m going to need it with all these visa applications coming up! I also have a to do list for this website that’s several pages long. Not big things, but added to having to make a return visit to the foreigners office to continue the month long process for my new Spanish ID card (which is never ever simple for me!) I had a lot on my mind.

However, my biggest worry this month was my UK fiancé visa application. I haven’t shared too much about it here, other than occasionally in these monthly updates, but I’m engaged to marry an Englishman. Yay! Except that falling in love and wanting to be with someone from another country isn’t always that simple. Instead it means a lot of paperwork, money, and stress. Thankfully the preparation part of the visa application is done but now I’m playing the waiting game. Also known as checking the online progress every morning and night (and sometimes middle of the day too…).

Highlights of October

Lots of ups and downs this month! The ups included getting back into the tapas groove in Almería. Seriously, I LOVE the tapas here. I have yet to find somewhere in Spain where I think they’re as good!

I had a fantastic time in Edinburgh at the wedding I went to. There’s something nice about being part of a family unit, and I realised how much I miss mine!

Probably the biggest highlight was the contentment I felt in Madrid, once I allowed myself to. Wandering through the different neighbourhoods, and especially Parque del Retiro made me remember how much I love exploring new places and why I’ve chosen to travel so much. I tried to let go of all the worries and stresses I’ve had recently around visas and bureaucracy and to stop stressing so much about money, work, and this blog and just realise there’s only so much one person can do!

Popular posts from October

I’m happy to say that my post about Why Off Season is the Best Time to Travel in Europe was the most popular this month. I’ve travelled more in the autumn, spring and winter in Europe than I have in summer, for a lot of reasons, which you can find out in the post. I dare you to check it out and tell me if it convinces you to put Europe in the off season on your travel list!

Off Season Best Time To Travel Europe

Other posts

In response to the feedback from my birthday survey in September (thanks to everyone who filled it out!) I wrote a couple more guide type posts:

A Guide to Everything You Need to Know About Kotor, Montenegro

and

The Best of One Day in Dubrovnik (Plus Budget Tips)

After doing a Snapchat takeover of the Travel Facts account, where travel bloggers all over the world take a day to give you facts and show you about different places, I decided to take the facts I’d shared about Almería and make them into a post. So here’s 7 Facts That Will Make You Want to Visit Almería, Spain.

Lastly I wrote a more personal post about one of my favourite places in Scotland, Glen Coe, and shared my stories about all the times I’ve been there. Plus photos because Glen Coe is BEAUTIFUL. Have you seen it?

The Stories of Glen Coe, Scotland

The Stories of Glen Coe, Scotland

Top Instagram photo

This was the top photo on the Migrating Miss Instagram this month. It’s from Budva in Montenegro, and funnily enough a lot of people thought it was me…I wish! It’s actually a statue of a ballerina who was said to have jumped off the cliffs behind where I was standing when I took this photo, because she couldn’t be with the one she loved. Beautiful statue, slightly depressing story…

Blogger shout out

This month I want to give a shout out to a truly kick ass travel blogger, Alice at Teacake Travels. She just got back from completing the Mongol Rally AND driving back again. She blogs thing as she sees them, in both a personal and informative way so you can really connect. As well as having an awesome blog she snapchats like a champ so check her out!

How was your month?

Sonja x

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