Saturday, April 10, 2010

Living la vida loca

Well my life here in Spain is very close to being at an end, so what did I learn?

Work - here in Spain work has gotten much harder to find, but I think thats a global thing TBH, however at this point they still need English teachers but I feel that will change with original language options appearing everywhere. 
If possible dont pay 15% tax on your earnings, after paying that much for 3 years all I ever got back was 250 euros!!!  Should have been nearer 2,000 euros. 
If you have the chance to pay 7% take it and pay the difference at the end of the year.  It isnt like the UK where they send you back the overpayment.

Holidays - Spain is full of holidays, global, national and regional.  If they're not on holiday there is a good chance they are having a siesta.  Either way the things you want at that time forget it, I always run out of milk or bread or something I need urgently just at siesta time; no, I never learnt or understood it.  Most holidays are religious based and Spain has many saints.  Some such as Semana Santa are great spectacles to behold, whereas others like the Tomatina are fun and San Fermines is plain crazy!!!!!

Food - the food here is good, to be honest.  If you like fish and tomatoes I am sure you will love it here, as I cant eat either I had to dodge around certain foods.  It is a nightmare for vegetarians and heaven forbid you have a more restricted diet (for whatever reason) - Spain doesn't get it, vegetarian to them simply means less meat!

Wine - they have some great wines here and for a country that drinks so often, they have a good approach to alcohol, unlike the UK's binge culture.  They love to party and have a good time and ANY excuse is worth celebrating.  However drink driving is still a huge issue here; for that matter driving in general is a huge issue here!! (they drive on the wrong side, I think thats the problem)

Family - Spaniards have great family bonds.  They consider family to be very important and kids stay home until they are 30+.  The Italians have this culture too, but the UK doesn't, we should adopt this more.  Family is important - just a shame you cant pick your family ;)

Cost - Spain can be pretty expensive when you look around and consider prices, mainly games and electronic stuff, it is TOO expensive.  But in general I found it cheap enough to live and not on par with France which is very expensive; for almost everything.

People - Spanish women are fiery and generally very attractive.  Downside is they shout alot they call it 'talking', but really its SHOUTING!!!
Spain is very open and adjusts to new things quite quickly and as a country developing rapidly.  
Sadly their bureaucracy side is still slow and behind the times.
Travel - Spain has some amazing places to visit and explore such as Granada, Seville, Barcelona, Asturias and a huge diverse mix of landscapes - great for a photographer.
It also has a good infrastructure for getting around the cities and countryside - but book in advance for tickets though.  The one thing to watch for mainly in bigger cities is pickpockets and bag snatchers, we could pretend they dont exist but its not true - keep your eyes open and be street smart, do not walk around with a large map unfolded and a gormless look on your face.
Luckily now with cheap airlines there is little excuse not to visit Spain. 
You wont regret it ;)


dtravelsround said...

Great summary! I can't wait to get back to Spain. :)

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