New Year, New Beginnings, New Life?

Our move to Spain and the run up to Christmas and New Year was hectic to say the least.  So many new and strange things to adjust to and a huge emotional response after living in our last house for 16 years.  It has taken a bit of time to get it all into perspective.  I would advise anyone making such a big move as this to expect this emotional response and to just let it happen and not to doubt yourself.  The hardest bit was that everyone kept saying 'well done you, you are living the dream', but it really didn't feel like it at the time.  And now?  Yes the dream is coming true, slowly but surely and it feels great!!

Christmas is fairly low key in Spain (well in this rural area it is) with the main event being on 6th January when the Three Kings (aka the wise men) come to visit and bring gifts for the children.  It was really refreshing to have a break from the mad commercialism of the UK... it was really frustrating however not to be able to find any Christmas cards here... I was looking forward to sending Spanish ones to my friends and family back home but couldn't find any at all.  I shall be better organised next year and perhaps make some.

Our three kings in this village were not quite so grand as this but they did dress up and were carted around the village streets on the back of a decorated lorry throwing out sweets and treats for the children who ran along behind.  It was very simple and very low budget but the excitement of the children was palpable and I thoroughly enjoyed the whole thing.

And now?  Well the search for our dream property begins.  We do not intend to stay in Andalucia.  We are very keen on Extremadura in the west of Spain.

Our search begins with trawling through the internet to find likely properties.  This was fun to begin with but very soon got tiring.  We know from experience and our visit last year that what appears on the internet is not always a true depiction of what is for sale.  Photographs can be misleading and equally sometimes not show the true beauty of a place so there is no substitute for actually going and seeing for yourself.

Rush hour in Extremadura.  This photograph does not lie!

The Bull Ring in Zafra

A property we looked at last year but in spite of the photograph showing a gentle slope we had difficulty in climbing up it was so steep!

Our 2013 property viewing trip begins in a month's time and I can't wait... it's even more exciting this time round because we have sold our house in the UK and actually have the money in the bank so we are ready to roll! I am keeping our favourite properties under my hat for the moment but keep checking back because before long (if all goes to plan!) we should be able to show photographs of what we have bought!


  1. Nice to hear from you Jane, good to read how you are making progress towards your new life. There is some very good advice there for anyone contemplating upping sticks and doing the same as you. Look forward to travelling your journey with you.

    I have a friend who lives in Spain with two properties to sell. They want to come back to the UK, but are struggling to find buyers. Maybe you will be luckier doing it the other way round.

  2. Exciting post to read Jane, I'm so pleased to hear you are now beginning to "live the dream"
    Good luck on your house purchase, I will be keeping my fingers crossed for you both and of course I shall be eager to read your updates. Happy 2013 it sounds as though it's going to be a wonderful year for you. Linda


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