Living In Spain v elsewhere/was Pozo negro

Do you have a query on how to get things done in Andalucia, where to find things, who to call? Find out by posting and hear about others experiences.
frank
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Postby frank » Wed Sep 21, 2005 9:31 am

k wrote:Well done for the posters who are discussing the virtues of spain against the UK in this posting. Whilst I appreciate the input of the likes of Kevin and Frank who constantly state 'living with rose coloured specs'. Yes I am for the advice research etc, but I am surprised that whilst they say they love spain, it always 'appears' they are really slagging it off. I am amazed that they disagree with the folks who are still living here in the UK, with a current opinion, who are giving the reasons for trying to leave. Frank appears to live in utpopia and Kevin just seems like life passed him by. (As I see it )



I'm not the business of slagging it off, I'm simply a realist that can see both sides of the coin, I can appreciate the good with the bad. Of course, we could be like the others, and tell you everything is perfect there, everything works like clockwork, but some would be very disappointed when they did move there, because that's not the way Spain works. It you seriously believe, like some, that you can sit out on the balcony all through the winter in a t shirt, for example, carry on, but the truth is it's a nonsense. I think on the subject of the weather alone, a lot moving out there, will be disappointed. Whilst I don't live there, I have been visiting various parts of Spain for over 20 years, at various times of the year, and I know from my own experience, the sun doesn't always shine!
I don't live in Utopia either, although compared with a lot of UK, it certainly seems like it. More than four cars in a row here, is a traffic jam. When I drive around with the radio on, listening to the road reports of horrendous traffic jams all over the place, I count my blessings that I don't live near any of those places. Friends of ours got snarled up in the M25 traffic two days ago, coming from Gatwick, took them seven hours to get home! Someone on here made a big play about it being a nice day in Spain, I was also out, walking the coast path for 3 hours yesterday, in shorts and t shirt, it was a glorious day here. Sure, we have rain, but it's certainly not the grey, depressing place that others would have us believe. I have said many times, if I lived where a lot of the people here had lived, I'd have forsaken these shores long ago as well. I wish you luck, and hope you will not be disappointed.
Regards, Frank

No soy residente, simplemente un turista, ¿qué sé yo?

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costakid
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Postby costakid » Wed Sep 21, 2005 9:42 am

I live partime on the east of Malaga and the traffic is ok. If i go the other side of the airport and i time coming home wrong the traffic is quite often backed up from the airport turn right back to Fuegirola. This is most nights in the summer months. It sometimes reminds me of the M25. Spain is a great place but no way is it perfect. Shorts all year it is not. I am not even sure they get the 300 days of sunshine that they always quote. Saying this we still love it.

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kevin77
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Postby kevin77 » Wed Sep 21, 2005 10:05 am

K, All myself and Frank have done is point out some realitys about life in Andalucia, stuff which is not on the TV programmes and is glossed over by some members of this forum.
Things such as extreme weather, basic infrastructure, lack of work, lack of anything to do, construction standards, language difficulties are issues which you ignore at your peril.
You might not meet these problems if you are very lucky, but they do exist, I assure you that I have not invented them.

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jpinks
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Postby jpinks » Wed Sep 21, 2005 10:28 am

kevin77 wrote:Things such as extreme weather, basic infrastructure, lack of work, lack of anything to do, construction standards, language difficulties are issues which you ignore at your peril.
I presume you are talking about UK here? We get some storms in the early spring or late autumn, but nothing like the blizzards and storms in northern europe.
The infrastructure in my patch is reasonable, certainly not as a bad as some parts of France. Lack of work or anything to do smacks of a distinct lack of imagination and inventiveness. This is not a nanny-state, thank goodness.
The language is not so difficult either - all the foreigners I know manage to get by quite well and some have excellent Andaluz!
kevin77 wrote:You might not meet these problems if you are very lucky, but they do exist, I assure you that I have not invented them.
These apparent problems exist anywhere you might try to live. Try an immigrant suburb of some of the UK towns you will have those difficulties with employment, recreation, language, etc.
It is a shame that you can not produce a more balanced picture Kevin, but I agree it is difficult - given that we are trying to compare Andalucia with the whole of UK from Shetland to Lands End.
Slainte,
JohnP.

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silver
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Postby silver » Wed Sep 21, 2005 10:45 am

frank
It you seriously believe, like some, that you can sit out on the balcony all through the winter in a t shirt, for example, carry on, but the truth is it's a nonsense

Why do you insist on insinuating that other people lie. I seriously believe, that you can sit out on the balcony all through a great part of the winter in a t shirt I know from my own and others experience. You also insinuate constantly that when other say something good about Spain that they are saying something bad about England. For example if I say I had a lovely evening meal of wonderful fresh BBQ sardines on a terrace on the sea front, listening to the Mediterranean waves and watching the stars sparkle in the clear night sky...I am not saying that fish and chips on the sofa watching coronation street is bad. Please take note.
I'm not the business of slagging it off, I'm simply a realist

Though you do claim...that because YOU are "realist" your word are true..its other who don't happen to agree with you that are not "realist"
certainly not the grey, depressing place that others would have us believe
Hey You are talking to others who have all experience this themselves.
costakid.. I have a friend who lives east..el palo..swims almost every day of the year..and I have yet to see him wearing trousers..(before someone asks..no I do not get in bed with him) He does however have a hell of a time finding a space to park his car.

300 days of sunshine that they always quote
are these statistics or just quotes??? I would have imagined this figure to be higher...
not counting last winter which was exceptionally bad.
katy these seem to contradict
Unless you are VERY hardy every house in Spain needs central heating.
Although fairly rich the only heating was some sort of convector heater
The great majority of Spanish homes in the south have the same sort of heating. Maybe it is you yourself who feels the cold.
I probably spend at least the same amount on heating as I did in the UK
or are you facing north.

I have mentioned before that the orientation of a house/flat is very important in Spain..north means it will be very hot in summer and cold in winter..south facing is warm in winter and cool in the summer...
Also once off the coast and up in the hills the altitude makes it colder at night once the sun has gone down. If you choose the hills, a wood burner
(not stuck inside a chimney, as the heat is lost up there), rugs on floor, especially if you have the old type terracotta tiles which, retain water and can cause damp and cold)and curtains should keep the house nice and cosy.
k
I think it is unfortunate that some postings, whilst attempting to give a balanced view (rightly so) the balancing appears to be enviable/ argumentative, and that is a shame

Personally I try to offer the views I know from my own personal experience of 30 years living in Spain..without comparing or balancing..
No muerdes la mano que te da de comer.

Nikvin
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Postby Nikvin » Wed Sep 21, 2005 10:55 am

Whilst the temperatures can be extreme, we had -10c or so in January, the climate is much better, far less humidity, and whereas i was near crippled in the UK during most of the year, I suffer very little here. And cold though it can be in various area, it doesnt chill you to the core as it did in the UK.

The infrastructure in my area is fine, the water comes from a natural source, in the mountains behind the village, and is perfectly drinkable, we have excellent local medical facilities and good schools. A couple of electricity cuts, the most recent when a storm took out a substation (could happen anywhere), and the water was off for 3 days 3 yrs ago when another storm took out the pumping station. and a few more times for roadworks, and maintenance, but only briefly.

There's also plenty to do, the village puts on various cultural activities, such as theatre, dance shows, music, and cinema (not till 11pm tho!!), and often the very latest films, often only just out at big cinemas. All this for FREE or occasionally a very small contribution. Then there are the surrounding towns and villages with their activities. And the numerous fiestas, and sporting activities for the kids.

Ok , these are in Spanish............but this is Spain . Learning a bit more of the language and about the culture would go a long way to making many people's lives here far more fulfilling, rather than sitting indoors watching sky, or getting sozzled in the local bars.

Of course if one likes football, there are even more social possibilities, with (most) of the village, attending some of the bars to watch most matches and making a big occasion of it. Rivalry ..yes, yobby football punch ups...no .

Lack of work , well yes that can be a problem, but then if anyone comes to Spain needing to work, they should research the possibilities, and areas before making that move, and accept that wages (and cost of living)are lower, and plan accordingly. There are jobs, legal ones, but when Brits keep turning them down, cos they dont "fancy" them, what can they expect! Then they moan, when they get caught working illegally, and are still struggling to make ends meet.

Utopia..well to me yes, but then it does rather depend on one's expectations, needs and wants. Easy life, all rosy in the garden.........No,
but I wouldnt go back. We did not come for health or financial reasons, though had Spain been considerably MORE expensive than the UK, we may well have had to stay put.

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kevin77
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Postby kevin77 » Wed Sep 21, 2005 11:11 am

I'll just take one tiny thing as an example.
A few days ago someone, I think it was Frank, remarked about the electrics in Spanish houses and their habit of tripping due to the power restriction.
Now, I recognize this and it has happened to me and to every body I know. It has probably happened to everybody who visits this forum. You have to be careful about how many appliances are switched on at once.
It is a fact of life in Spain. I call that an infrastructure problem.It doesnt happen in the UK thankfully. And yes, I know you can arrange an increase in tarrif if the supply is sufficient and you.
But this was never acknowledged. As usual the Hyacinth Bucket brigade came on giving their ' theres no dogmuck on my street, thank you very much' message as if it was some personal dishonour.

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silver
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Postby silver » Wed Sep 21, 2005 11:23 am

habit of tripping due to the power restriction....power restriction.

Let me try and explain this problem..which is an instaltion /contract problem and not a power restricion problem.
Once a house has been wired up one has to obatain a contract from the power people, for a set amount of juice.. when this set amount is passed the electric can trip...and if more electric is needed then a new electric instalation and contract is needed (upgrading).
' theres no dogmuck on my street,
Oh yes there is..
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katy
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Postby katy » Wed Sep 21, 2005 11:47 am

Silver I do know the difference between North and South! My house gets the sun all day it isn't overlooked thank god. We are a bit high up, facing the sea but here it is colder in the valley, in the campo at the bottom of the garden it must be at least 5 degrees colder, probably due to the cork and euclayptus trees. In winter the sun goes behind the mountain about 6pm and it turns cold pronto.

However today is a superb day, estupendo. the whole of Africa can be seen. who cares about the winter take it all back :wink:

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jpinks
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Postby jpinks » Wed Sep 21, 2005 12:02 pm

kevin77 wrote:...A few days ago someone, I think it was Frank, remarked about the electrics in Spanish houses and their habit of tripping due to the power restriction.
Now, I recognize this and it has happened to me and to every body I know. It has probably happened to everybody who visits this forum. You have to be careful about how many appliances are switched on at once.
It is a fact of life in Spain. I call that an infrastructure problem.
Well - you'e be wrong again Kevin. It has nothing to do with the electricity supply. Just get them to install a bigger circuit-breaker. The "standard" one is quite small because the demand for electricity was not so great. Incomers tend to have far more appliances than the Spanish did previously, so it pays to get you house electrics beefed up to match your requirements.
It doesnt happen in the UK thankfully.
On;y because the standard circuit-breaker has a higher rating.
And yes, I know you can arrange an increase in tarrif if the supply is sufficient and you. But this was never acknowledged.
Acknowledged :) And easily remedied[quote} As usual the Hyacinth Bucket brigade came on giving their ' theres no dogmuck on my street, thank you very much' message as if it was some personal dishonour.
No dishonour - just reality kicking in again. And there is dogmuck in all streets in all countries(metaphorically)
Slainte,

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kevin77
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Postby kevin77 » Wed Sep 21, 2005 12:19 pm

See what I mean?

They are saying it doesnt happen.

I had this tripping problem in a modern flat in Madrid. Suppose I should have asked the landlord to upgrade it!

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jpinks
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Postby jpinks » Wed Sep 21, 2005 12:27 pm

kevin77 wrote:See what I mean? They are saying it doesnt happen.
Not true - it DOES happen - you just need to get your circuit-breaker upgraded.
I had this tripping problem in a modern flat in Madrid. Suppose I should have asked the landlord to upgrade it!
Yes
Slainte,

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silver
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Postby silver » Wed Sep 21, 2005 12:33 pm

kevin77
See what I mean?
They are saying it doesnt happen.

I admit to having a spelling problem but I can see that yours is in reading...with a tendency to read between the lines (to suit yourself) and putting words in the mouths of others.
katy
I do know the difference between North and South

I was not asking if you knew the difference just trying to explain how this and other factors can affect the temperature inside a house.
However today is a superb day, estupendo. the whole of Africa can be seen. who cares about the winter take it all back Wink
:lol: exactly.
No muerdes la mano que te da de comer.

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kevin77
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Postby kevin77 » Wed Sep 21, 2005 1:25 pm

it DOES happen - you just need to get your circuit-breaker upgraded.
So I can file it under poor construction standards.

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silver
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Postby silver » Wed Sep 21, 2005 1:32 pm

poor construction standards
I could tell you a good few stories that would make yer hair stand on end...but nothing to do with Andalucia...so I wont bother.
No muerdes la mano que te da de comer.

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jpinks
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Postby jpinks » Wed Sep 21, 2005 2:08 pm

kevin77 wrote:
it DOES happen - you just need to get your circuit-breaker upgraded.
So I can file it under poor construction standards.
Not really - a circuit breaker is a small item of the electrical installation - probably cost you about 25 euros in an electrical shop. The amount of electricity supplied to a house is a standard that has been serving the Spaniards well enough for years - it's only in recent years and with the advent of much higher consumption that this problem has become more noticable, but it is very easy to fix.

Kevin - you will always find fault with things if you look hard enough, but that is a very negative way of thinking. I could wax long and lyrical about the short-comings of life in the UK, France, Germany, Ireland, etc, etc, but I don't like to do that. Much better to be happy with the choices we have made for ourselves, and allow others to do the same.
Slainte,

JohnP.

Lorraine - Mijas
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Postby Lorraine - Mijas » Wed Sep 21, 2005 2:08 pm

I don't often like to agree with Silver but I think I may have to on this one, The Spanish way of supplying electricity seems to be that they do a general installation with a set fairly small out put. If you require more than this you then have to up grade. The only reason I was made aware of this was because my Fuse box has a couple of Empty spaces and when I queried this with the developer I was told that this was to enable me to upgrade as a higher user. Given that I've had years worth of power trips in different properties and had never heard of up grading I thought my developer was telling me porkies, but now I see he may have not been!!!
I find it an annoyance in winter but have now learned which things trigger an overload. Electric heating, tumble drier and kettle are a bad combination.!! Where I do think, Spanish power suppliers are silly is that they need to review there idea of basic usage as, with all modern societies, times have changed and we use far more gadgets and appliances than we used to!!
Lorraine

frank
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Postby frank » Wed Sep 21, 2005 2:16 pm

"Why do you insist on insinuating that other people lie. "

I'm insinuating that you exaggerate a lot, and I'm not sure why you feel the need to. Nobody has supported your statement about sitting around all winter in a T shirt, in fact the likes of Katy, Costakid etc, have said quite the opposite, ie. it gets bloody cold. As I said in an earlier post, a house we stayed in in Montefrio in May was the coldest house we have ever been in. My brother spent 2 weeks on CDS in April two years ago, and vowed he'd never ever go back again, unless it was the summer. Sorry, but you sound a like a voice in the wilderness, you must have your own personal little weather system around your flat.
Regards, Frank

No soy residente, simplemente un turista, ¿qué sé yo?

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silver
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Postby silver » Wed Sep 21, 2005 2:24 pm

franc
Montefrio
means cold mountain, and is not Costa del Sol perhaps that is why
was the coldest house we have ever been in

weather
there are loads of webs that will show the facts.
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jpinks
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Postby jpinks » Wed Sep 21, 2005 2:38 pm

Lorraine - Mijas wrote: I find it an annoyance in winter but have now learned which things trigger an overload. Electric heating, tumble drier and kettle are a bad combination.!!
That is a fearsome combination - possibly about 15000watts!!! Any electrician will tell you that it is too much for the standard installation. But - as has been said many time - it is really easy to fix - and probably worth doing Lorraine, even though you are trying to sell - - you can demonstrate your new supply to prospective buyers by turning everything on at the sema time :)
Where I do think, Spanish power suppliers are silly is that they need to review there idea of basic usage as, with all modern societies, times have changed and we use far more gadgets and appliances than we used to!!
"We" might mean the foreigners in Andalucia, but I don;t believe that the average Spaniard is using so many appliances. A tumble-drier in Andalucia??? What happened to the washing line on the roof terrace? But I suppose there are reasons for your needs - we all need different things. Just get the supply upgraded and you will be fine.:)
Slainte,

JohnP.


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