I get that a lot.
I get that a lot from people who know nothing of life in Southern Europe. Maybe they’ve been on a holiday to Italy once or twice. Maybe they’ve been to Spain once or twice… or any other warm Mediterranean place but what’s it like to live is a warm country..?
I’ve learned what’s it like when I moved to Rome after my amazing holiday in Florence, Italy. I fell in love with Italy and promised myself to live in Italy at some point in my life. I made it happen! It took me about 6 months to get a new career path. I became an English language teacher. It took me another 6 months to find a job in Rome.
The Reality “hit”
It wasn’t easy to just move to another country again. However, I was determined. I got the job and moved to Rome with 5 suitcases from Guildford in Surrey. It was all my life packed in those 5 suitcases which I had to get rid of later. It was my second experience in a foreign country. I didn’t really speak Italian but was excited to learn it.
I won’t lie it was hard to find a place to live. I would ring up to a potential place and they’d hang up as soon as I spoke because I spoke English. People simply didn’t understand what I said. Eventually I found a “mad professor” who rented me out the room in his apartment. The reason he was “mad” he said the only way to learn Italian if he spoke to me in Italian all the time. I understood nothing.
My job was slow. The red tape in Rome was harsh. I didn’t expect it. Although I was lucky to get things done because Italians loved my blue eyes. I had it easy compared to others. Such is life…! I couldn’t get enough lessons to get by. I used up almost all my savings. I felt alone. I walked everywhere in Rome by the time I left I knew Rome at the back of my hand.
I decided I had to leave Rome it wasn’t working for me.
My once felt love for Florence got darken by the reality of life in a holiday destination.
However, it taught me that what I loved on a holiday wasn’t an every day life. It was a huge lesson for me. I still love Italy — it’s an amazing country. However, I cannot live there. I learned that through my own experience.
The Reality of life in Spain
Now, I live in Spain. When I moved to Spain I wasn’t alone so it was easier because I have a partner in crime. There’s plenty of red tape in Spain too but somehow it all works. I have to go through paper work and do all the things that the country requires but it all works in the end. It’s the same in Italy or any other country I would think…
However, every day life in Spain is like a holiday which I didn’t expect.
When I first thought of us living in Spain I never thought our life would be like this. Driving by the sea with a nice Spanish guitar in the background. Go horse riding in the mountains. Eat the freshest food from fruit, vegetables to fish. While all the time I have the sun in the face.
I can grow my own organic vegetables such as aubergines, cucumbers, kale, tomatoes, oranges, lemons, pomegranates, grapefruits, blueberries…I breath fresh air in the mountains and the exciting city of Barcelona is just less than 10 min away. I have the sea and the mountains. It’s a life in colour. It’s a life of health which is the only wealth I posses.
The people are amazing. Not everyone, of course, but everywhere I go I meet nice people. In comparison to London it’s like heaven here. Of course, Spain has its own issues with Catalunya and other political things. So does Italy and other European countries. If you are buying a property in Spain you have to check the paper work with the lawyer.
It’s a new business in Barcelona — to scam tourists who want to buy a property! Many tourists from Holland or Northern European countries come to Spain they love it and want to buy a place. They get scammed a lot! However, you’ve got to be pretty stupid to pay money for something without having lawyers or as it is in Spain notary.
So what’s it really like living in Spain — heaven for me. I love the sun, the sea, the mountains and the people. I love the life we are creating for ourselves. It’s a life of health with so much more. Why wouldn’t you create a life rather than live a rat race in the city like London?