About the Expat

Yari. 23 years old. University of Maryland alumnus. I started the application process for 2 programs in Spain that would allow me to be a teaching aide helping students learn English and made this blog in the hopes of helping others who are interested in the programs and to document my own experiences with each program. Plus, I wanted a fun way to keep my family and friends updated on my adventures.

I arrived in Spain the 1st of September and will be staying here, at least, until June 17th. Of course, if I renew with BEDA for a second year, I’ll be here even longer. I am working at a colegio teaching students from 1º and 2º ESO and 1º of Bachillerato.

Many people ask me why it is that I decided to pack-up and leave for Spain and my answer to that is always why not? I recently graduated college and I don’t want to go to grad school just yet. Why not take the opportunity to do something I may not get to do later on? A lot of people say, “Spain’s not going anywhere. You can always visit later.” The thing is, though, I don’t want to just visit Spain. I want the experience of living there. And while it is true that Spain isn’t going anywhere, the longer I wait, the more things I’ll have tying me home and impeding me from going. The point is, I think there’s no time like the present. Carpe Diem.

Random facts about me:

  • I love Harry Potter. Love may not even be a strong enough word.

    See, this is me at a movie theatre in Puerto Rico. I think we were going to see The Proposal, but this was there and it was obviously necessary that me and my sister take a picture with it.

  • I am an avid reader. I live and breathe books. Some of my favorite books: Harry Potter series, Paper Towns, Looking for Alaska, The Time Traveler’s Wife, My Sister’s Keeper, The Book Thief, Catcher in the Rye, Pride&Prejudice, The Fault in Our Stars (honestly one of my ALL-TIME favorites–have tissues with you when reading it), Hunger Games series, Mortal Instruments Series, Life of Pi, and Anna and the French Kiss (it’s not as cheesy as it sounds! Though it is YA…but so are The Hunger Games and Harry Potter, but plenty of adults read those). I’m always up for some recommendations, so email me some or leave one in the comments 🙂
  • I’m Puerto Rican and go there every single summer. It’s always the highlight of my year.

    Mami and Me at a random beach that we decided to stop at on a whim in Puerto Rico. My mother totally ended up ripping her shorts right on her bum when she fell trying to climb back up the rocks to get back to our jeep. I could not stop laughing for a good 5 minutes.

  • Chipotle is my favorite “restaurant.” Give me a carnitas bowl with some guac any day and I’ll be a happy camper.
  • My friends like to call me the queen of social media because I have a bit of an obsession with entertainment. I’m one of those people who has known about a movie or a song long before it’s even released.
  • I grew up in Maryland.
  • I am a huge Anglophile. Huge. I say things like “Bollocks” and “Bloody Hell” often. I also will randomly slip into a British accent.
  • I’m short. 4’11”. I really don’t think there is a nickname that I haven’t heard regarding my height. If you think you know of one that I haven’t gotten, leave it in the comments and I’ll let you know.
  • My favorite band is La Oreja de Van Gogh. I also love Matt Nathanson and was finally able to meet him when I saw him in concert for the 3rd time.
  • My macbook and my iphone are my children. They have names, though I will not divulge those since it’s a little bit embarrassing.
  • I am bilingual (English and Spanish).
  • I am ADDICTED to caffeine. Coffee is my life source.
  • Favorite sports teams: Yankees, Steelers, and FC Barcelona.
  • Oh and I love Spain.

    Me in my Spain jersey the year they won the World Cup 🙂

    If you have any questions for me, leave them in the comments. ¡Hablamos Luego!



16 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. tobyo
    Apr 28, 2012 @ 21:22:36

    ¡que interesante! I too am obsessed with Spain 🙂


  2. Amy
    Aug 21, 2012 @ 08:45:24

    Hi Yari! I came across your blog today. I’ve been living in Spain and although originally from Indiana my family lives in Puerto Rico! Hope your transition to Spain goes smoothly


    • Yari
      Aug 21, 2012 @ 15:33:46

      Where in Puerto Rico does your family live? My entire family is from Naranjito, but our condo is in Dorado.
      What tips do you have for me as an American in Spain? Are there things I should make sure to bring from the States that I won’t be able to find in Spain?


  3. Colleen
    Feb 04, 2013 @ 22:04:52

    Hi Yari! It’s a pleasure to discover your blog. I’m living in France and hoping to teach English there (it’s what I’m getting a Masters to do). Your favorite books are pretty much spot on with my own, although there are a few that I haven’t read (Anna and the French Kiss sounds interesting). Haha I’m writing a Master’s thesis on the translation of the Harry Potter books, so I’m a big fan too. And I love coffee. So we already have a lot in common. It’s great to find other Expats out there!


    • Yari
      Feb 05, 2013 @ 00:13:55

      I always love finding blogs run by fellow expats! Can I just say that I am infinitely jealous of you living in France. My top 3 places are Madrid, Paris, and London…in that order. I’m planning another trip back to Paris at the beginning of May and I can’t wait. I would love to live there for a few months (maybe do a program like the one I’m doing here in Spain – I find that I’m enjoying teaching English much more than I ever imagined).
      Also, I love discovering fellow bibliophiles! I keep hoping to find people to discuss books with, but I haven’t had much luck. And you win so many cookie points for doing a Harry Potter related thesis…that is just full of awesome 🙂


      • Colleen
        Feb 05, 2013 @ 13:35:21

        Well if you want any info on teaching English in France, or even living here, feel free to ask me anytime (or you can look at my blog for more general info). I’d love to get to Spain soon, but I unfortunately have neither the time nor the money for the time being. Hopefully that will change soon! Spain is my next destination must see for sure 🙂

  4. Eduardo@Andaremos
    Mar 07, 2013 @ 08:34:48

    Hola Yari,
    Que sorpresa!
    En que region te encuentras.
    It should not be hard to adapt to their accent. I find that our accent is very similar to how they speak in the Canary Islands. When I hear them speak I have to look twice – they sound like they are from Cuba or Puerto Rico.
    Quisiera irme a vivir a Espana y dejar atras el rat race.
    Quedate por alla.
    Hasta pronto…


  5. Trackback: Learning to Leave. | Lady in Spain
  6. Trackback: Winding Down. | Lady in Spain
  7. Angela
    Jul 01, 2013 @ 02:11:08

    omgosh! i also graduated from University of Maryland (2012)! were you an English major by any chance?


  8. Karina Enid
    Jul 12, 2013 @ 06:10:48

    wow, tu también eres puertorriqueña :’) yo vivo en la isla y voy a comenzar a hacer este programa en Septiembre 🙂 Te adaptaste más fácil, ya que sabes hablar español?


    • Yari
      Jul 17, 2013 @ 18:51:29

      Definitivamente, el hablar español fue sumamente beneficioso para mi para hacer este programa. Gracias a que hablo el idioma, me pude comunicar bien con los otros profesores en en colegio y he podido formar una bonita amistad con muchos de ellos. También, cuando es hora de tener que disciplinar los estudiantes, nada trabaja tan bien como poder hacer los regaños en su idioma jajaja
      Y claro, el facilísimo acostumbrarte a un país si ya dominas el idioma 🙂

      Y ya verás que mucho Puerto Rico tiene de la madre patria 🙂


  9. Karina Enid
    Jul 12, 2013 @ 06:11:31

    me gustaría hablar contigo sobre los procesos de sacar el NIE/ orientaciones una vez en Madrid y todo eso 🙂


  10. eludingennui
    Feb 07, 2014 @ 20:03:04

    Hey Yari!
    I wanted to let you know that I’ve nominated you for the “Liebster Award” and you can check out more details here: http://eludingennui.com/2014/02/07/liebster-award-nomination/


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