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Expats in Spain

31 replies

boo64 · 19/06/2007 15:12

Why is it that Brits in Spain have English language newspapers, radio stations etc and all stick together but I bet many of them are the same people who would slag off immigrants to the UK who stick together and use their original language?

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Soph73 · 19/06/2007 15:16

Can see your point boo64 I think it´s probably because most (not all) of the expats in Spain are working so paying taxes so like to consider themselves "Spanish" but then expect all the comforts of home, forgetting that the same happens in England - why shouldn´t immigrants in England have papers/bars/schools in their native language if they´re working and paying taxes.


Soph73 · 19/06/2007 15:18

Would love to stay and chat more about this (we live in Canary Islands) but only have a computer at work and about to finish for the day. Will check back in the morning to see if any more posts (sure there will be).


boo64 · 19/06/2007 15:18

It's something that has been perplexing me for a while - it's quite hypocritical. I thought a lot of the Brits in spain were retired so therefore not paying tax?

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mother2b · 19/06/2007 15:20

this also really annoys me, i leave in a place where there are alot of people froma a lot of different races and nearly all of them make an effort to speak english, they may hang around together but thats up to them! english people are so ignorant, they expect people from different cultures and countries to speak our language fluently but dont make an effort when going abroad, i have a good friend that is brazillian, she speaks excellent english just has a strong accent and when wlking around our local shopping city was apalled at how people treated her, i bet if british people moved to brazil they wouldnt learn portugese!
british people are just so racist and it makes me ashamed to be part of britain!


Soph73 · 19/06/2007 15:21

There are more retired Brits in Spain than over here as this is quite a small island and although we have a fairly large Brit community (we don´t live near it btw) most of us over here work. However, my dh and I have tried our very best to learn the language and fend for ourselves. We still get slagged off sometimes by the Canarians but that´s only to be expected because you tend to get tarred with the same brush.


Soph73 · 19/06/2007 15:26

Exactly mother2b sometimes I´m incredibly ashamed to be British. It makes me cringe every time I hear a tourist over here talking to the locals as though they were hard of hearing and listening to things like "I thought they all spoke English" as though they are zoo exhibits. The upside for us is that we can converse now with the local shopkeepers/waiters, etc and can talk about the tourists to our hearts content as they don´t understand what we´re saying


Soph73 · 19/06/2007 15:27

Really do have to go now as ds needs picking up from swimming.


speedymama · 19/06/2007 15:31

OP, here here! So many times I have listened to interviews on radios where some ignoramus says that they are emmigrating because of the number of immigrants in the UK.


suzycreamcheese · 19/06/2007 15:39

i hear dh uncle talk like this (lives in spain with wife)...all the immigrants in uk blah blah thats why you emmigrated to spain then, barney?...
i think they think spain,at least certain parts, where they live,are theirs, therefore english..


mother2b · 19/06/2007 15:45

"why shouldn´t immigrants in England have papers/bars/schools in their native language if they´re working and paying taxes"

i agree with this also, it annoys me when on the bus out of local shopping city (which drive past some mosques) you hear people complaining that 'we' dont stick churches up all over the world so why should they stick up mosques, now this our our own fault at britons for as a whole not being religious, i only know a hand full of religeous britons and most of these are decendants of other cultures

i just hate to see anyone being treated different for their shape, size, colour,handicap, culture or basically anything out of their control.

why shouldnt people from other cultures move here?

so many times i hear peopl talking about all those 'imagrents that come over here and take all our dole money' these people are uneducated and if they looked would realise that when people move to our country dont want to sit on their bums for a measley £42 or whatever it is a week, in fact in my experience people from other culture are very hard workers because they want to prove themselves! but if people are constantly nasty and dissaproving this will change and people will start think 'why do i bother?'

you here the expression so much 'its a free country' YES it is so get on with life rather than making it bad for other people

sorry for long post but this is something i feel really strongly about, i could keep going easily but rant over for now!

sorry if i rambled abit [


UncleBarney · 19/06/2007 15:46

How very dare you! That's you lot out of my will.


Bouncingturtle · 19/06/2007 15:59

Mother2b - I wholeheartedly agree with you.
My dad is Spanish, he moved back to Spain 20 years ago after he and my mum split up(she kicked him out). When he was in England, he learnt the language as quick as he could be talking to people and reading English books and newspapers. He worked constantly, never claimed money from the state and paid his taxes.
He lives near a large British ex-pat community and counts many people from there as his friends. They are a mixed bag. For example at a bar my dad took me to, a man came up to him and started chatting away to my Dad in Spanish, I assumed he was one of my Dad's Spanish friends. Until he turned to talk to an English couple in English with a broad Cockney accent!
Another time, I went with my dad to a car boot sale and was chatting to an English women who tole me that she only knew a few words of Spanish (she was impressed when I spoke with a Spanish woman about an item I was thinking of buying - I don't actually speak much Spanish myself ). I asked her how long she had been in Spain(expecting her to tell me no more than a couple of months) and I was staggered when she said 10 years!!!!
And yes it is true that those who won't integrate are the ones that harp on about immigrants!!!!


Bouncingturtle · 19/06/2007 16:00

ROFL @ Uncle Barney


bookwormmum · 19/06/2007 16:06

I don't get that either - if I emigrated to Spain or Italy, I'd hate to live with other English folk. I'd want to live with and as the natives do (I did start learning Italian to this end once). I guess expats want an "English community" without the bad weather.

FWIW I hate it when people from the UK misbehave abroad as it tars everyone speaking English with the same brush . After all, like it or not, they're representing their country.


manyhands · 19/06/2007 16:13

Yes, I was an umarried mother to an illegal immigrant partner in Taiwan who didn't even have to pay taxes as teachers don't have to there. The Sun would so been knocking on my door had I been Taiwanese doing that in England,


mother2b · 19/06/2007 16:19

am actually being a little hypocritical here though, see, i was born in germany and live there until i was 5, then went back for a very short while when was 11, i lived on a british base and went to a british school and did not pick up much of the language, although if i went back now i would definatly learn german. i can understand quite alot of german just cant speak it very well.

hypocrite me

but that doesnt mean that its right!


SweetyDarling · 19/06/2007 16:21

Agree Mother2b, and it makes you wonder where these people have travelled in their lives (probably no further than the next county) to think we haven't stuck churches up all round the world!


mother2b · 19/06/2007 16:22

i have a friend who has naturally dark skin and she enjoys coming tanning with me, and when i discussed this with my nan (because she thinks that people with dark skin dont want to hve dark skin) she was gobsmacked and started making excuses like 'shes probably doing it to try and fit in'

sorry to turn thread about immigrants into one about racism but i see them to be very closely linked


speedymama · 19/06/2007 16:26

Mother2b, generally when the ignoramus talk about invading immigrants, they are not referring to the French, German, Finnish, Americans, Australian, New Zealanders etc because they are predominantly white. They reserve their bile for the non-whites like my parents.


mother2b · 19/06/2007 16:48

were i live we do have a lot of white immigrants such as polish etc

i just hate the way people predudice against anyone who is not 'perfect'(even though i dont know what this is)

i was short at school and slightly chubby in hindsight (even though at the time i was mad to feel like a whale) and got ridiculed for it! so now i hate it when people say their cruel words to anyone that is remotely 'differant'

british people are so racist, even people that recon that they are not racist still make racist comments, my dad grandad, dp and a lot of friends constantly make racist comment and dont understnad why i get offended! i get offended because they are degrading the culture i live in! it makes me so mad!


Bouncingturtle · 19/06/2007 18:38

speedymama - sadly tis true. It makes me so . Intolerance based on such superficial things as colour of skin has no place in the world.


Rosa · 19/06/2007 18:56

Can I just say that not all British / English act/ behave like you have stated some of your comments seem to imply that.
I am an expat I have both British and local friends. I have adapted to the local ways of life and have changed my ways to be accepted into local life. I am still however the foreigner/ stranger though and I will remain that way.
I watch Eastenders and love good British food..But I don't feel the need to go to a pub or reading british newspapers . Thats what going back to the Uk is for !


SenoraPostrophe · 19/06/2007 18:59

It's true that a horrifying number of Brit expats on the coasts of Spain fail to learn Spanish, but rant on about how immigration has ruined the UK. It gets right up my nose and is the reason we moved inland. Of those expats, none consider themselves Spanish and almost none pay taxes (because you don't have to obey smelly foreign laws, only UK ones)

It's not a majority though. there are nice expats about, on the coasts and inland. They're just quieter.


boo64 · 19/06/2007 22:31


no of course not all expats are like that and I'd guess maybe it's a minority.

I actually think it's perfectly natural to hanker after some aspects of your home country e.g. food, want to know about the news from there.

I do have a problem with lack of integration be it Brits abroad or any immigrants here who do not integrate.

But what really gets my goat is the hypocrisy of all this amongst Brits.

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boo64 · 19/06/2007 22:32

A very small minority of Brits might I add - I didn't mean to sound like I was tarring us all with the same brush!!

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