In true 'me' style, I'm suffering from a case of "want what I can't have."
I've had my nine months in Spain, and I know it wouldn't be the same if I went back, but oh my God do I miss that place.
Spanish people well and truly have the "work to live, don't live to work" motto down to a pretty fine art, something I have realised since being back in Leeds.
In Spain, no one runs around with their mobile strapped to their head. Everyone smiles. People stop to chat to others in the street; which doesn't piss people off. People don't run into traffic to get to wherever it is they're rushing to. People make eye-contact; acknowledge you're another human being, not a robot. People stop to take in what's around, rather than shuffling with their face facing forwards or at the pavement. Effort is made to meet up for lunch, its cheap but amazing quality...
Their lives aren't based on the materialistic things but on the quality of their life. There's no need to be bigger, better or more extravagant than anyone else and if someone is, there's no need to beat them.
It could be the sunshine, it could be the prices, I don't know what makes Spanish people so happy, but to me they really "live" and live properly.
The first things I did when I got back to the UK were - joined a gym, spent a fortune on clothes, bought too much make-up and changed my phone from iPhone to Blackberry, all things that weren't important when I was in Estepa.
I don't dislike Leeds, I dislike who I become when I'm here.
I'm sure I still manage to annoy people while I'm shuffling at my own day-dreamer pace around the city centre, but I'm probably the only one who has looked up every once in a while to notice whats around, or has appreciated just what I've got.
A good quote I've found in El Alquimista // The Alchemist - Paulo Coelho (that I'm still reading)
"Cuando todos los días parecen iguales es porque las personas han dejado de percibir las cosa buenas que aparcen en sus vidas."
"When each day is the same as the next, it is because people fail to recognize the the good things that happen every day in their lives."
I think it's definitely true, and something I will remember if I'm having a bit of a down day/week.
Spain taught me a lot.
So stop to smell the roses this weekend :)
I'm sure that work/deadline/meeting can hold on just one second.
Love & Relaxation, Sam xo