The summer schedules and vacations have ended although the summer heat has not. At night and in the mornings, the temperature is in the low 60s and increases to in 90s in the day (16 and 32 degrees Celsius for non-US friends). One of my students said that you have to dress like an onion in Madrid. And with summer ending, work and all the craziness that comes with it is slowly picking back up.
Although I was originally told that the primary hiring season is in August and therefore, assumed that fall classes would start up at the end of August, beginning of September. And I also heard things will pick up in mid-September. However, my main company that I teach at with a block schedule (several hours in one location for most of the week) is restructuring and therefore, cancelled all training including English classes until January. As a result, leaving a big hole in my schedule and unfortunately, after the majority of classes have been assigned to other teachers. So, I will not have my “set” schedule until sometime in October. Then finally, I will (hopefully) be teaching 25 hours a week (full time for a teacher) for the months of October and November until everyone in Madrid decides to take off for holidays the month of December and most of January.
But as of now, I am grateful for the classes I am teaching. I currently have around 15 hours with the language school with a few additional video and phone classes, which are less money than a face to face class, and continuing with my private student when her schedule permits. I am thankfully still attending Spanish classes; however, my work schedule forces me to either arrive late and/or leave early or cancel altogether. Like last Friday, I had a video class rescheduled in the middle of my Spanish class. Therefore, I cancelled my Spanish class. And of course, the video class was cancelled the day of. Needless to say, I am tired of the instability and constant changes in my schedule.
As for my work authorization, it is not so surprisingly still processing. I started working at my language school in March, the paperwork wasn’t submitted until June, it is now September, and I still do not have it. And since it coincides with my student visa expiration date, once I finally get it, it will only be good until the end of December.
Putting aside all the frustrations of being a TEFL teacher in Madrid, I have had some amazing weekends with friends. I finally tried a delicious and cheap taco place in the center, went out for a belated birthday dinner with a good friend, did yoga in Retiro Park, went out for drinks and listened to a live band with a student (and now friend), and went to an Oktoberfest (however, it should have been called Octubrefest because the only thing German about it was the beer!) And I am really looking forward to one of my really good friends coming to visit this week and then venturing to ROME!
Although it is not easy being a TELF teacher, the experiences thus far and to come are well worth it!