Okay, bear with me here, but as a proud owner of two passports, one British and one Spanish, I like to consider myself something of a cross-cultural Hannah Montana. Growing up I felt like they were two separate identities of my life (much like the Miley and Hannah situation – you see, it makes sense!), only to recently realise that they are one and the same. Because in fact this is something which gives me a unique outlook on life, especially as a languages student.
For context, my mum is española and my dad English. I’ve lived most of my life in England but lived for a year with (and am very close to) my mum’s side of the family who live in a small village in the Castilla y Leon region in Spain.
En 2020 pasé el primer verano de mi vida en Inglaterra gracias a las restricciones de la pandemia. Fue algo que me hizo reflexionar sobre mi “doble-vida”. Siento que llevo dentro de mí dos identidades y dos experiencias de haberme criado con asociaciones completamente diferentes con mi vida inglesa y mi vida española. Empecé a pensar en como ha cambiado lo que significa tener doble-nacionalidad para mí en diferentes fases de mi vida hasta ahora.
From my childhood, I have fond memories of watching both Make Way for Noddy and also Barrio Sesamo. I had one grandparent serenading me with Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and another with Cinco Lobitos. Being poorly as a kid meant a spoonful of Calpol or Dalsey and the tub of Vix Vaporub which expired back in 1997 (which seems to be a staple in any abuelitos’ medicine cabinet).
I spent my first year of primary school in my tiny rural Spanish village primary school wearing my babi (the iconic brightly coloured chequered overalls that all kids wear in pre-school) and popping home at 2pm for lunch and a little siesta before afternoon classes, a somewhat rude awakening when I started school in England and had to go a full 6 hours without a nap….