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Tumbit : Jo Green - Having a Baby in Spain

Jo Green, 34, has been living & working in Spain with her long term partner for 5 years. As a "Professional Career Woman" in the UK she always believed that being a Mum was something that happened to other women. However, on moving to Spain she has found herself succesfully managing a career and being a full time Mum to an unplanned (but much loved) Baby Daughter. Things in life change, things don't go to plan... Jo tell's how it's those that can and are willing to adapt to change that generally succeed in making a life in Spain.

13 Observations On The Peculiarities Of Life In Spain
30 August 2010 @ 17:33

Every ex-pat that has ever lived in Spain for even the shortest period of time has had to adapt in some way to the subtle differences in everyday life. Setting aside the obvious issue of Spanish timekeeping, I have listed just a few of my observations :

• Am I alone in finding it incredible that after numerous years living here in Spain, every brand of cling-film that I buy seems to be non-stick?

• Spain apparently has more high street banks than any other country in the world. This is seemingly neither due to the overall wealth of the nation, or the amount of daily usage that the average saver or borrower generates. It seems to be down to the fact that it can take a team of 4 staff to deal with half a dozen customers in a single morning – probably due to them having to double up a Citizen’s Advise Bureau, Samaritans, Town Hall (unofficial), Town Hall (Sometimes official aswell ), and community centre.

• Spain also reportedly has more Café bars than any other country in the world, with almost 1 bar for every 10 people. And, in the majority of towns, you can still struggle to find a decent slice of cake!

• Despite what the Spanish Government may lead you to believe, a “Non-Smoking” area in a public place seems to be entirely optional.

• Nobody seems to find it ironic that Telefonica have a department called “Customer Service”, and Telefonica themselves don’t seem to worry about being questioned for false advertising.

• Utility bills for Water, Telephone, Electricity, Town Hall taxes etc… always seem to arrive at the same time, often for 6 months at a time, and are rarely correct.

• If you do not live within spitting distance of the Town Square, then you must therefore live “in the Campo” – this is black and white – there is no in between.

• Fiestas and Fairs etc… are rarely publicised before the event, but you can read about them in plenty of local publications after the event to see exactly what you have missed out on.

• It is impossible to buy everything that you need for the week in just one supermarket, often requiring as many as three trips.

• You will never, ever win an argument or debate with a Spaniard, likewise you will rarely change their opinion once their mind is made up.

• Nobody seems to realise that a 65 year old woman on a moped just looks wrong.

• Small dogs are like a plague of vermin around the town centres. Where do they all come from?

• Whenever you see children trying to play in a park, you will always see a swarm of grandma’s chasing after them trying to force feed them tostada’s and yoghurts. Just let them play! – They’ll eat when they’re hungry!

If you have anymore observations, then please add them to the Comments box below…



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2 Comments


Justin said:
31 August 2010 @ 18:29

Love it! The fiestas one really made me giggle. It's as if the locals just know when things are on. Publicity is truly word-of-mouth in Spain.

The cake one is one I've often wondered about. Why never any cake? Seems very odd to me.


foxbat said:
21 September 2010 @ 12:43

Re the comment about cling-film...I'm pretty sure that the reasons for this are safety related. Clingfilm nowadays is adhesive to itself but not to other surfaces; the original clingfilm had chemicals which tended to leach out into the foodstuffs, particularly fatty foods like bacon and cheese. The chemicals were and still are fairly toxic and the US FDA and European Food Standards Agencies found it necessary to step in and ban the use of this particular material.
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