I’m Chelsea, and as you may have guessed from my blog’s name, I’m currently living in Spain! Born and raised in Western New York, I attended the University of Rochester where I studied Spanish and Psychology. I’d always excelled in Spanish, however at the university level I was challenged which made me question why I was studying the language. I finally realized that I needed to master Spanish because I had this internal need to connect to my heritage. My dad’s mother was from Valencia, and until her death, always communicated with my dad and his siblings in Spanish. I was always fascinated with Spain as my ya-ya would travel to her hometown and would bring us little gifts and tells us stories about growing up there; I knew I’d have to go one day. In 2009 I studied abroad in Granada, and fell in love with the country, and travel. That’s where this blog began, though it’s humble beginnings were really only for the eyes of my family and close friends.
After graduating in 2011, I moved to Arcos de la Frontera, (Andalucía) Spain to participate in the Auxiliares de Conversación program offered by the Spanish government (a.k.a. the North American Language and Culture Assistants Program). My job was to assist the classroom teacher in giving English lessons and other subjects in English. However, I quickly realized that teaching English was not my calling became really unhappy with my circumstances by my third year in Spain. I was unhappy with my job and my apartment, but more importantly I was unhappy with my health and felt lost about what my goals were for the future.
I had somehow convinced myself that moving to Spain would be the key to my weight loss which would be the key to my happiness. I figured that a different environment would kickstart me into making changes to my unhealthy habits. Surprise, changing your environment does not change YOU! So finally, in January of 2014, I made The Change. I left excuses behind (and believe me, there were many) and started to make my health a priority, and because of this I’ve found my passion and happiness. You might notice that there is about a year-long lapse in posts from 2014-2015; my focus on health and fitness is why. My priorities shifted and I couldn’t really figure out how my blog fit in with that.
After four years as an Auxiliar de Conversación I’ve decided to wrap up this stage of my life and move on to the next. Until June 2016 I’ll be working full time in an English academy here in Spain, and after that I’ll be moving to Bristol, England to study! I’ll be doing a Master’s degree in Nutrition, Physical Activity and Public Health.
But don’t worry- Andalucía Bound is here to stay! This blog has always been my attempt to capture the ups and downs of living and loving in a foreign country. I’ve become well versed in Spain and teaching English but my interests have expanded and therefore, my blog is transitioning as well. I’ll be writing when I feel inspired, and I’m not restricting myself to travel and Spain. Please follow along as I delve into my last year in Arcos, reaching my health and fitness goals, another international move (boyfriend in tow), and the life of a grad student.
So, please join me! Follow along and share your stories! I’m all ears and I’m so happy to have your support.
Definition of BOUND