As a child, Lidia grew up with a sense of invisibility. She used to be the quiet child at the table and often found it hard to be listened to in her hometown. However, these early experiences fueled her desire to go off and explore the world.
“If you want to be listened to, you have to be loud.” (Lidia, 01:48)
At the age of 18, Lidia moved to Salamanca, where she earned a degree in Translation and Interpreting. At 21, she moved to Germany on an Erasmus Scholarship. There, she realized how humbling it can be to surround yourself with people who don’t speak your mother tongue. This Erasmus experience was so thrilling that she went back for more. In 2017, she began her master’s degree in Conference Interpreting at the University of Heidelberg in Germany. There, she honed her skills as a simultaneous and consecutive interpreter. Want to know how? Listen here to find out!
You will also discover where she is now and what the future holds for her.
Born in the city of Cuenca, Spain, Lidia Muñoz Solera studied Translation and Interpretation at the University of Salamanca. After finishing her degree, she moved to Heidelberg, Germany, where she began a master’s degree in Conference Interpretation. Today, she is based in Burgos, Spain, where she works as a German teacher.
Lisa and Juan are one of those marvelous bicultural couples who live between cultures, between countries, between lifestyles. Juan met Lisa because he was trying to keep up with his English. He was born and raised in Spain, while she was born in the UK and raised by an Italian mother and British father.
After several years together in Spain, they decided to pursue their teaching careers in the UK. The decision was easy at that point, since there were no kids involved yet. Having worked in several countries, Lisa and Juan tell us about their experience in the educational system in the UK, compared to the Spanish system, which is made up mainly of civil servants.
Being a bilingual couple living in the UK, they inevitably address the elephant in the room: Brexit. Are they planning on coming back to Spain or are they staying? Their mindset, as they see it, is to wait and see what happens. However, they find the situation painful, given their personal environment.
This is why Brexit hurts so much! I feel European. (Lisa, 16:34)
Luckily, as they are both teachers and have long vacations, they come to Spain as often as they can to visit friends and family. If you want to get to know them better, have a listen here.
Juan Sedeño Zamora grew up in central Spain, while his wife Lisa Porter was raised in the UK by an Italian mother and English father. In 2002, they met in Spain while teaching and studying foreign languages, then later decided to pursue their teaching careers in the UK. Currently, they are both teachers at Framlingham College in Suffolk. They return to Spain several times per year with their children to visit family and friends.
Dolka is a cheerful and friendly Colombian woman with a lot of energy! Currently, she teaches Spanish in Richmond, Indiana, but before that, Dolka owned a small business selling food, juices and smoothies. Over time, she not only nourished the locals, but she also built a small community around her.
Driven by her desire to improve her English when she arrived in the States, Dolka started browsing through the books that she could find; namely, cookbooks! These cookbooks sparked such joy in her, that with time she ended up opening her own establishment: Dolkalicious!
There, in the heart of Richmond’s historic district, she started off by selling fruit juices and smoothies three days a week. Eventually, she began to sell wholesome, home-cooked meals and earned a place in the hearts of the people who would go and eat at her beautiful, cozy restaurant.
“How I cook for my family is how I cook for my customers.” (Dolka, 21:50)
Today, as a teacher, she continues to cook and bring food to her students. If you want to find out more about Dolka and Dolkalicious, go ahead and tune in! She even shares some of her cooking hacks… What are you waiting for?
A native of Colombia, Dolka Lina Vazquez holds degrees in Bacteriology, Linguistics and Business Coaching. After meeting her husband while traveling, she moved to the United States. She followed her innate sense of well-being and opened Dolkalicious, an all-natural juice bar. Today, her son is away at college and her daughter, Gabriella, is still at home. Dolka lives in Richmond, IN, where she teaches Spanish full time.
The Silver Lining –
When mothering abroad, it isn’t only about getting one’s point across and getting things done one’s own way. Our Season 3 guests also learned to appreciate certain Spanish ways of life, especially when it comes to their children.
Raising children abroad has the obvious benefit that they will grow up bilingual and will learn that there is more than one option when it comes to living a fulfilling life.
For our third guest, Michele, it was more than just bilingualism. In her interview, she shares with us some interesting insights on how bilingual (and bicultural) children are better at focusing, at recognizing the values and manners of each culture, and are more open minded and tolerant.
“[Being] bilingual is praised now.” (Michele, 16:41)
Michele Franche is a native of Ottawa, Ontario. After graduating from McGill University and the Université de Montréal, she moved to Spain where she earned a further degree in English Philology. Michele currently lives in Cuenca with her twin daughters and her son.