There are so many changes when you move to Spain and you’ll be surprised by how quickly you settle into your new way of life. Most of the changes will creep up on you and you won’t even realise at first that your original home country now feels like the foreign country!
Things that seemed weird when you first arrived or visited on holiday now seem perfectly normal, and a visit back to see friends or family reminds you of weird habits that you didn’t think about before.
We’ve now lived in Spain for not far off 2 years and so thought it would be funny to list some of the things that we think all British expats in Spain could relate to.
You know you’re an expat in Spain when…
- You think anything below 25°c is cold – get those jumpers out!
- You wouldn’t dream of having dinner before 9pm
- Or lunch before 2pm
- You’re not surprised to see kids playing outside at midnight in the summer
- You find yourself talking ‘Spanglish’ with people in shops, restaurants, banks, etc
- You say ‘Buenas‘ to every person you come into contact with
- You complain about how busy it is with ‘tourists’ during the summer
- You know what the GBP/Euro exchange rate is every day
- You’re no longer surprised if you find caracoles (snails) or conejo (rabbit) in your paella
- You have friends and neighbours from all over Europe
- You rate a bar by the quality of it’s free tapas
- You have more lemons that you know what to do with
- You’re used to Spanish brands and wouldn’t dreaming of paying for expensive UK or American brands in the supermarket
- You’re used to not having take aways readily available
- You’re used to everything being closed on a Sunday
- You just ask for ‘cerveza‘ rather than a particular brand of beer
- You’ve got used to driving on the ‘wrong’ side of the road
- You’ve forgotten what rush hour is
- You feel like the only person who knows how to use roundabouts
- Or what an indicator is for
- You no longer feel the need to rush
- You don’t expect people to turn up on time
- You’re used to planning appointments around siestas, especially in the summer
- You know your NIE number better than your phone number
- You no longer ask what the fiesta is for you just join in
- You’ve stopped saying please and thank you
- You know that any official appointments will take all day
- And you will need 2 photocopies of everything
- You know that you need to allow a couple of hours for a ‘quick’ trip to the bank
- You don’t expect anything to get done in August
- You consider home where you are now
If you’re an Expat in Spain, how many of these sound familiar?
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