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An Integrated Immigrant.

A light-hearted dig at some expats on the Costas who really just want to live in 'Little Britain in the Sun'

An Integrated Immigrant. II
22 October 2010




One of the things I really miss about the UK is the Bank Holiday. Being able to put the grandkids in the car and drive off to spend the day at the local DIY Superstore!

Letting the kids run riot, screaming their heads off and emptying packets of screws and bolts and scattering the contents all over the place. Ah, happy days, but I digress. This blog is supposed to be about my life in Spain.


Talking of Bank Holidays, I must say I don’t trust these foreign Banks so I keep my money in an old established British Bank, the good old HSBC (The HongKong and Shanghai Banking Corporation!!! mush be shum mishtake!) and just get my cash from the ATM.


After coping with a full English breakfast I have a light lunch, usually a genuine Cornish Pasty (made in Murcia!) washed down with a pint of John Smiths. I can’t get on with foreign lagers although they’re a good deal cheaper, still, won’t be accused of being a lager lout will I?


After lunch I generally go round a market, there’s usually one close by on every day of the week. I don’t usually buy anything, although they have some good bargains, at least I think they do: It’s a question of having to ask the price, ‘cos a lot of market traders don’t speak any English you know, I suppose it’s a general lack of education.

I mean, we were all taught English at school weren’t we?


I do most of my shopping at Iceland or other local British supermarket. I find it so much easier to understand the instructions on the packets. Although, I must say that Iceland can be confusing over prices: If it says a pound on the packet they charge €1.35 not a bad exchange rate, from their point of view, but with the rate at present at about €1.12 to the pound, a bit of a rip-off for us customers!


I like to go back to the beach in the early evening to watch the tourists. They all descend on the beach at about ten in the morning like a load of lemmings, stay there frying all day, then hobble away home like boiled lobsters at about six o’clock.

It always makes me curl-up laughing.



Like 0        Published at 21:36   Comments (3)

An Integrated Immigrant.
21 October 2010


You know, I’m really enjoying my retirement here on the Costa Blanca. I came here ten years ago for the sake of my health, having been a chronic bronchial asthmatic all my life. I had two operations when I was five years old to remove part of my lungs and was not expected to live very long!!! I don’t think that they perform that operation any more, they achieve the same result with drugs, but that’s doctors for you, always practising and then burying their mistakes.


I’d worked out my finances very carefully before leaving the UK. I sold my little bungalow outside Blackpool and cleared the mortgage and had enough to buy a similar property over here, albeit on an Urbanisation. I had my state pension to live on together with my disability benefit. A benefit that I had to fight for, with the help of the Citizens Advice Bureau, as the Pakistani doctor that the Department of Work & Pensions sent to interrogate me decided that I wasn’t entitled to it, at least I think that’s what he said as his English was virtually non-existent. The publications advising of your rights to benefits were unknown to me at that time.


As soon as I set foot on Spanish soil the DWP stopped my forty odd pounds a week benefit – as though I had been miraculously cured. This was an unprepared for setback but the exchange rate was still strong, about Ptas 260 to the pound and the cost of living seemed so much cheaper so I swallowed the pill and carried on.

Then, some time later, the currency switched to the Euro and prices increased overnight, but I was still viable. More recently the Merchant Bankers (Rhyming Slang intended!) chasing even bigger bonuses destroyed the western world’s economy together with the exchange rates. So now I am just about hanging on by my bootstraps!


As I now look out in the early morning sunshine I can see the Mediterranean gleaming in the distance. Mind you, I have to look through the razor-wire fencing, across the mine-fields, past the watch-towers and the guards with the Alsatian dogs, all designed for the protection of us inmates in our high security twilight home for the elderly confused, that is our Urbanisation! After all, we don’t want any foreigners sneaking in, do we? We had a foreign family living here at one time but for some reason they moved out. I don’t know why.


I don the regulation kit of lilac t-shirt sporting ‘I’ve been to Blackpool’ on the front and ‘Kiss me quick’ on the backside! Together with khaki shorts, black socks and white trainers, well I think you should maintain some sartorial standards after all; we’re not on holiday are we?


I go down to our local British café for breakfast, a full English, I don’t hold with the continental type, bread and coffee. All washed down with a couple of cups of Tetley.

Not bad, but a bit steep at fifteen Euros. Then a get my daily comic, The Sun or Star, one has to keep abreast of world events. Not that you find any reported in those publications, but, like the majority of their readers, I just look at the pictures.


Then it’s off to the beach. Out through the gatehouse, wishing a cheery ‘Good Morning’ to Miguel, our gatehouse keeper who usually responds with what sounds like: ‘Puerco Ingles’ which I imagine is a similar greeting in foreign!


                                                                                                                                                          More To Come.............!!!


Like 0        Published at 01:17   Comments (5)

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