Lifestyle Travel

Year Abroad 2020: My Life in Palma, Mallorca

It’s just before eight o’clock in the morning, and my alarm goes off. I slowly open my eyes to see that the sun has started to enter through the wooden shutters. Today is a day like any other in my life as an intern here in Palma, and it is time to get up and get ready. My workday begins at 9 a.m and before that I always make sure to treat myself to a long and relaxing breakfast.

The others who live in the flat tend to get up significantly later than I, which means that the peaceful solitude of the morning is all mine to enjoy with my cup of steaming hot coffee and bowl of chocolate overnight oats. Perhaps unsurprisingly considering my Scandinavian heritage, I am rather fond of strong coffee in large quantities, and therefore I have taken great pleasure in exploring the local specialty coffee shops and tasting my way through Mallorcan coffee.

Image Source: Isabelle

While the majority of my work is done remotely, I do have permission to go into the office a few mornings per week to prevent cabin fever. Today is one of those days, so I am packing up my things and heading for the train which will take me out of Palma. There is almost no-one in the office apart from the board, but the receptionist greets me with a smile as always and we chat for a bit in Spanish about our respective weekends.

I have a meeting at 11 a.m. with my supervisor, but until then I set up my desk and get on with my work. Making friends as well as practicing Spanish has proven quite a challenge under the current circumstances, but my tactic has been to occupy the table next to the coffee machine and it has prompted several ten-minute conversations with various people in the company.

The office closes at lunchtime and I head back home to get something to eat. I have fallen in love with meal prepping over the last few months, and today I have a beetroot and feta pie waiting for me in the fridge. While I eat, I catch up with my flatmates and hear what they have been up to during the morning, and at around 2 pm I return to my work.

One of the positive aspects of working remotely is that I can choose my location – if I don’t have any meetings in the afternoon, I quite often bring my things with me to one of the local cafés and sit down with an espresso and a Duquesa, a local pastry made with ricotta cheese.

Image Source: Isabelle

Most days, I spend the evening at home on the sofa with a good book or my embroidery, but tonight I have a class in Salsa and Bachata. I wanted to get involved with an extracurricular activity here in Spain, and dancing has always been a passion of mine. Having said that, I am seemingly incapable of moving my hips in the way that these Latin dances demand and I have accepted that I am the worst dancer in the group, but that does not bother me at all. I am having fun and creating memories, and that is what matters.

Thank you for joining me on one of my workdays!

If you’d like to see more of Isabelle’s adventures in Palma from solo hiking to exploring the castles of Palma check our her YouTube channel Swenglish Stories.

Isabelle

Isabelle is a third year Spanish and Italian student, currently on her year abroad in Palma. She's documenting her experience on her Youtube, Swenglish Stories. Her proudest achievement is being awarded Dishwater of the Week in Home Economics in Year 8.