A good point was made this morning, that my recent posts have consistently been critical of Spain, and that some perspective would be in order. And that’s true. While this country, or more particularly this *area* of this country (Andalusia), is probably the most laid-back, non-serious place I’ve ever been in my life (short of Nepal), you’d be hard pressed to find anywhere on this planet offering a higher quality of life. (And perhaps those things go hand in hand.)
Hey, no fair – why is it higher?
Why is it higher? I can only answer from a personal perspective, and relevant to this particular area of Spain.
First, the climate is spectacular year round. I think there’s something like 340 sunny days per year. Around this area, the mountains run up to the sea, creating a microclimate that’s not too hot in the summer, nor too cold in the winter.
Geographically, you have very close access to both the mountains and the ocean. In the winter, you can literally go skiing in Sierra Nevada in the morning, and spend the afternoon back home on the beach.
The southern Spanish way of life has a lot of things I really like. Small towns– you can typically walk anywhere you need to go. Much of life takes place outdoors– breakfast, lunch or dinners at roadside terraces. Meetings with friends after work at tapas bars.
Andalusia is tremendously rich in terms of interesting places to visit, fantastic foods and wines.
Well, that is interesting. I am an Aussie living in Japan. Australia has the weather and relaxed lifestyle, and Japan has the efficiency of services. My quest is to combine the two. The services problems you describe in Spain are inconceivable here, and I think, after 18 years of getting used to it, I would pop a valve if I had to deal with them.
Thanks for your response.
Move to Barcelona. Great quality of life, beach, countryside, skiing in the mountains (1hr trip) and a greatttttt city.