We interviewed Lindsay Woychick, an American living in Spain as an expat, on all things Spain to know about traveling to Spain and what it’s like for an American expat in Spain!
The Travel Squad has not yet been to Spain so we ask all the hard hitting questions in this episode about what to expect when visiting, foods to try, cities to explore and so much more. Lindsay first went to Northern Spain with a study abroad program, she fell in love with Spain and her now husband and has been living in Spain for several years now with her husband and daughter. She shared everything an American moving to Spain experiences, so if you’re thinning about moving to another country, this is a great episode to listen to.
Lindsay gives us her local insights on the best food and drinks in Spain, the Spanish lifestyle, raising a family in Spain, living as an American in Spain, and some of the best places to visit in Spain.
An American Living in Spain as an Expat FT. Lindsay W – Episode Transcript
Welcome to this week’s episode of the Travel Squad podcast. Today we’re interviewing Lindsay. Who’s going to give us a local travelers perspective of Spain.
3 (1m 7s):
We were connected with Lindsey through the PR slash marketing podcast community, which has her profession by day, but as an American born and raised here in the states, she studied abroad in Spain and ended up meeting her husband in Spain and now lives there full time. And it’s because of her unique insight. Living there as a student now married and raising her family that we’re having her on here to give us that unique travelers’ perspective and insider guide to Spain. The must do’s must seize and eats cause you know, the squad hasn’t been there yet. I think we’ve mentioned this on the podcast several times. Why haven’t we been to Spain? And this interview has really inspired us to go,
2 (1m 42s):
Yeah. After this interview, I am pumped up to go. Lindsay’s actually been living there almost 10 years now. And with all of that experience, living there in a Northern small town of Spain, she was really able to give us that perspective that you only get when you’ve spent that much time there exactly where to go, the exact foods to eat the cocktails, to eat the type of wine, how to order the wine. She gave us an insider. Look at what lunch in Spain is like spoiler. It comes with a jug of wine on your table.
3 (2m 10s):
It’s a good spoiler.
2 (2m 12s):
It’s amazing. She also went into detail on the bathrooms for us and another spoiler. It’s not what I was expecting,
1 (2m 20s):
2 (2m 20s):
All. So with that, let’s welcome Lindsay to the podcast.
6 (2m 29s):
Hi Lindsey. I know it’s late in Spain there, but thank you so much for joining us today on our podcast.
7 (2m 35s):
Thank you guys for having me on it’s a good day to be on a podcast.
2 (2m 39s):
It’s always a good day to be on a podcast. So if it’s all right with you, I’d like to just dive right in. I know that you’re not originally from Spain, but you are living in Spain and you’re quite the Spanish expert now. So tell us a little bit, how did you end up there?
7 (2m 56s):
I started here with a study abroad program, so it was a year long program and I ended up doing it my senior year in college and I ended up meeting my husband while I was studying abroad and he Spanish. And so through someone I had met here by coincidence on the Metro. She and I became friends and he was part of her circle of friends. And so she introduced us. And then we started dating from then my time in Spain and like February continued dating and did a long distance. And then I moved back in 2014 to teach English here. And the primary purpose was just to get a visa. And so I started teaching English and moved in with my then fiance.
7 (3m 39s):
And then we ended up getting married the following year. And so we’ve been here since now. I have a daughter and a dog to my name. So pretty much we’ve now made a life here.
2 (3m 50s):
8 (3m 52s):
I was going to say that’s fantastic and unintentional move to another country by meeting the love of your life. That’s exciting stuff. But where in Spain do you guys live? Currently?
7 (4m 2s):
We’re in Northern Spain. We’re in the Basque country. We’re in a small town called lake Iowa. And it’s right on the outskirts of Bilbao, which is the Capitol of the sky. One of the provinces within the bass country. We’re about an hour and a half from the French border and we touch the coast. So we’re, we’re about two miles from the beach right now.
6 (4m 24s):
And is that where you did your study abroad program or did you guys move to that area?
7 (4m 28s):
It is where I studied abroad. I’m probably a mile from where I lived when I studied abroad. That was kind of also not necessarily intentional, but my husband’s family does live here. He’s Spanish military. And so we’ve been really, really fortunate that he hasn’t had to move anywhere else. So yeah, he got stationed here and I was lucky enough to also get sent back here for my teaching program. So there was a lot of, a lot of coincidences that may not be coincidences, but it all worked out in our favor.
6 (4m 58s):
And how long was your study abroad program? How long were you in Spain?
7 (5m 2s):
Well, it was one year. It was August until may. And then I stayed the rest of the summer because I obviously, I loved it so much. I had to stay
8 (5m 10s):
Now just real quick. Cause obviously, you know, we’re going to talk more about your experience in Spain, giving us the low down. I mean, all of us as much traveling as we’ve done, we have not been to Spain yet, which when we think about it to ourselves, it genuinely shocks us. Like how have we not gone to Spain done anything about that? So I’m really excited to dive in. But before you moved there, got married. What brought you to the study abroad in that location where you’re at? Because when I think of Spain study abroad, I’m probably thinking like Madrid, Barcelona, maybe somewhere along the Mediterranean Southern coast area, like the Lin SIA. So why in that Northern region, which again, haven’t done much in Spain, but seems very unsuspecting of a place to go.
7 (5m 51s):
So the bass country has a connection with Boise. Boise has a big bass community. And so growing up in high school, I studied Spanish as well. And a lot of my teachers in high school had family from the Basque country. So we studied Castilian Spanish. And so for me, that’s kind of where the interest began in heading to Spain. And then when I got to Chico state Chico state’s study abroad program is very, very extensive and well known. And I started looking at the different programs that were offered and one of the options was Bilbao and another was San Sebastian, which is also the two places in the Basque country I could go. So I thought, well, if I want to go somewhere, I want to go somewhere where they’re going to speak Spanish. So for me, Madrid and Barcelona were out because they’re so big, they’re huge cities.
7 (6m 34s):
And if you want to learn Spanish, like it would be really easy if you were to go to a big city like that, for someone to speak to you in English, because they want to practice as much as you want to practice. So I wanted to make it intentional and I wanted to be somewhere a little bit smaller because for me, I was also not that comfortable in being in a huge metropolitan city. I didn’t really know what that would look like. I did not check out the weather though. And so up here in the Northeast is Seattle. Like it is the Seattle of Europe. I had no idea when I got here, what the weather was going to be like. I think it rains even just a little bit more than Seattle. So that was definitely, I was not expecting that, but that was the connection, the Boise connection, the Spanish that I wanted to practice and just a smaller place than, you know, metropolitan.
8 (7m 20s):
That’s such a little interesting tidbit that you gave about the Spanish population that’s out there in Boise, Idaho, where you’re from. I did not know that. And you answered the question that I had was when you said you were learning Spanish over there growing up, if it was actually Spanish, Spanish from Europe, because here in California for us, you know, we’re taught Latin American Spanish, and obviously it’s the same, but it’s different at the same time. So that’s very interesting in other parts of the us that you’re learning European, Spanish, Spanish.
7 (7m 49s):
I mean, I look back on it and I think all of the times that I thought I don’t want to learn the vosotros tense because you know, you have like yo to LA at the dose, which is for Spain. And I was like, oh man, this is such, this is an extra one. Like I do not need to be learning this right now. And I’m so glad I did because that is all like, that is the, you guys have Spanish here. So whenever you want to say you guys like that is it. And they use it all the time here. So I’m so glad that my teachers were on me back in high school to, to learn that tense. So
6 (8m 20s):
Do you remember how much the study abroad program costs approximately? Because that’s really interesting. And I think like a lot of times people are always interested in going abroad, but sometimes money is a factor. And one of our goals of our podcast is to show how affordable travel can be at times and to live there and you know, one get an education out of it and then to live somewhere abroad. I’m not sure what it costs you, but it’s definitely worth the experience. I’m sure.
7 (8m 46s):
Well, I’m going to be very honest with you. I’m very, very privileged. And my parents paid for my entire study abroad program. I can’t even give you that number. I’m so sorry. I am so fortunate that I did have the opportunity. I do know that in terms of the cost of a homestay versus the cost of living in an apartment with other students, the option to live with other program students was less expensive. And so that is the option that I did. So I lived with other American students that were studying abroad. I know Chico state had thousands of scholarships available for students. And that was something that you could take advantage of. I think a lot of times too, besides the financial piece, the piece of how do you make it work with your major, your degree?
7 (9m 29s):
That’s always something that people struggle with. And they were always looking for ways the Bilbao program was business oriented. And so you could take essentially a five to 10 classes of just straight business while you were here. And so that was, you know, an opportunity to get credits toward your actual degree for me, that my degree is in journalism. And then I was minoring at the time in Spanish. And so for me, it was like, well, I just overloaded on Spanish. I wasn’t necessarily looking for any other credits, but looking to make it that with your major, I know certain programs are designed to say, you’re studying biology. Like if you were to go to somewhere like Costa Rica and maybe you do some Marine study, they do like to incorporate internship opportunities.
7 (10m 13s):
And so that’s also something that you can take advantage of. I did a publishing house that I interned at and they worked with the Harvard business review. And so I got to work with them on translations for some of their online content. I mean, there’s such cool opportunities that come from study abroad.
2 (10m 31s):
That is really cool. And I’m glad that you mentioned the scholarships because I don’t think a lot of people are aware that those exist and that you can use them for studying abroad. And we like to talk about how travel can change your life. You know, your perspective, how creative you feel refresh you, but it literally changed your life. Like completely. That’s really cool. So you’re still in this smaller town area of Spain. How does that compare price wise to a place like Madrid or Barcelona cost of living cost of food? Perhaps?
7 (11m 1s):
I think it depends where in the city that you’re living. I mean, if you’re living in the center of Bilbao, the pricing will be much more significant than where I’m at right now. So like, I’m trying to think of how to give you an example, like housing prices for a piece though. So for a flat, like you’re looking at the area that I’m in at like 400,000 for a flat, which is probably the equivalent of 900 square feet, two beds, one bath space is very limited compared to what you might be getting in the states cost of living though. What I always say to people is to have a good time here. It does not cost you much. So, especially when you’re looking at it from a place of travel, like to eat and drink in Spain, you are going to eat the best you’ve eaten.
7 (11m 48s):
You’re going to drink the best you’ve ever drank for so little, like we’re talking, when you go out and Madrid, you go get a , which is a three-course meal for your lunch. And that’s the big meal here is lunch. You know, you do dinner, very light here. It’s all about lunch. I like that. And so it’s a three course meal, I would say, here in Bilbao, you could get a good three-course meal. We just went yesterday for 15 Euro. And that includes the Weiner beer. That includes your bread. That includes your first dish, which might be like , which is like a potato toady. So stew. And then you have like the second dishes, usually your fish or your red meat. So you’d have like a filet or you’d have, you know, fish is really big here cause we’re right on the coast.
7 (12m 32s):
So they eat a lot of halibut and a fish called hake. And then you get the dessert as well. And like we’re talking a half a bottle of wine to a bottle of wine. They just bring it to your table. And that’s all, you know, 15 euros, maybe if you were in Madrid and you were in maybe a tourist area, like the plus of my yard or the port to the soul, you’re going to pay more. But if you went one street off from those main Plaza, you’re looking at the 15 Euro, you’re looking at the nine Euro menu, the idea. So
8 (13m 3s):
That’s really awesome to hear you say that because that’s one of the things that I’ve really read and heard about travel in Spain. And it’s even though it’s on the Euro and you go to other countries and even though they are using the same currency, a lot of things like you’re describing are a lot more expensive. So maybe, okay, housing is expensive in Spain, but like you said, good time, your meals, your activities, your euros go a lot farther in Spain than other countries that utilize the Euro also. So it’s really awesome to hear you say and validate that. And it makes me even more. So I want to go to Spain soon.
7 (13m 35s):
And our healthcare is obviously covered as well. We don’t pay a dime in healthcare costs. So when you look at the cost of living, I had some medical stuff going on last year and you go to the doctor, you go to the hospital, there’s no bill that’s arriving at your door. So that’s another thing besides obviously you’re being taxed on it and taxes are a little bit higher here than in the states, but that’s something that doesn’t come out of pocket. What comes into your account every month in the form of his salary? It’s, you know, there aren’t as many unexpected that you’re, you’re not sure what’s about to happen. So
2 (14m 8s):
When you go to the doctor in Spain, you know, in the U S you have to pay a copay and then you get your insurance bill at the end. There’s no copay either. Wow.
7 (14m 16s):
I think I paid for my pregnancy. I paid 89 cents for a cup that I had to PN for a urine test.
6 (14m 27s):
That’s unheard of. Even in the states that you’re in test is going to be like probably a hundred plus dollars. It’s crazy.
7 (14m 36s):
Yeah. Yes, exactly. That’s it I’ve paid for. I literally, I paid for the cup. I played for the plastic cup and I mean, I had tests run last year. I had a cat scan and I had a bunch of blood work. Like you’re thinking in the states, they run that up significantly. The cost of any work you get done and nothing, zero. So it’s definitely something that when things are good and you have your health, like you don’t really think about it. It’s not going to be the same health care that you’re getting in the United States. So when you go to the doctor, I’ve been to the doctor in the states, plenty there’s is more hand holding and it may be at nicer experience. Like sometimes there are things that happen where I think like, oh, this would never happen in the states. But I also think, but I would never be getting this for the costs or the lack of costs that I’m getting it for here.
6 (15m 21s):
Yeah. That’s definitely an interesting perspective, especially since I work in healthcare myself. And so one of the things I always hear about healthcare when there’s like universal healthcare, you know, it’s a different experience or you might not get the treatment right away. Like you may have to wait for a longer, and I think that’s a big stereotype. Have you felt like you have had to wait longer periods of time to get seen? Or do you feel like it’s been pretty quick when you make an appointment?
7 (15m 45s):
It depends on what you’re seeing the doctor for. So like they have different category. So like if it’s something that they deem as urgent, you’re going to get in the next day, like where, if it’s something that’s not a significant, I’m not sure how else to describe it, but if it’s, if they don’t deem it as significant than you would have to wait a little bit longer. So for example, my father-in-law, he pulled something in his knee and he had to wait like four months for an appointment. Whereas I’m trying to think of when I’ve had issues. Like I had a kidney stone. And so like I went in with severe pain and immediately they sent me to get a cat scan. And so like the process began immediately. So I think it depends on the scale of what’s happening to you.
7 (16m 27s):
And with COVID two things have been slowed down significantly. I will say that. So for appointments, I mean, I remember last year making an appointment for the gastroenterologist and I had to wait three months or four months. So it was, there was a wait, but
8 (16m 41s):
There’s been a lot of slow down in the U S too, because of COVID for non life threatening things. So it’s everywhere. I don’t think it’s just within the healthcare system and span. I think everybody in the world is a really what that issue right now. But I’m glad we got a little bit of background perspective on you, how you got there, your time in Spain. But I really want to take this portion of the interview here for you to tell us more about Spain traveling through it, the big cities, the must do’s, things like that. So what would you say, like as a first time traveler for us, because we’re talking about coming to Spain soon, like, what are the must do’s where should we go? Time allocation, et cetera.
7 (17m 20s):
So I was, I was thinking about this in terms of time. I think if you’re going to be coming to Europe and the only country you’re going to be visiting is Spain. If that’s the case, you need at least a week, you need a solid week because in terms of moving around, especially if you want to do major cities. So like Madrid and Barcelona for me, like if you’re in a first time or coming to Spain and you want, you know, big city and kind of a big experience, it would be Madrid and Barcelona. I will say that my preference is Madrid. If you’re looking for like traditional Spain and kind of like those little side streets and Plaza is, and if you’ve ever been to Rome, so I love Rome.
7 (17m 60s):
I love Madrid. They’ve got kind of this same vibe and, you know, you can be in a huge city like Madrid, but it feels small when you’re on these side streets. So if you can get to Madrid and say, you don’t want to make the Barcelona trip next to Madrid, you have Toledo and Segovia, which are two quick hops. You can take the train from Madrid into Toledo, and it’s about 45 minutes. And it’s this beautiful. I mean, I don’t even know how many thousands of years old it is. And it has a military Ford, it has a cathedral. It has quite the background. Like it’s had like Judaism Catholicism and the Muslim faith. It’s been rained by all at some point.
7 (18m 41s):
So there’s touches of all of that, whether it’s in the architecture or the food, and then Sylvia is known for its like Roman aqueducts. And they’re also known for , which is like a suckling pig, but it’s so tender. If you get the opportunity to try it. And that’s about, I think it’s a little bit further, so you might have to rent a car for Sylvia, but I’m sure if you were with a tour it’s about an hour and a half, I think from Madrid. So if you did those, I mean, you’re in Madrid, say three days, you do two lay though for the day you do Sylvia for the day. If you wanted to make it over to Barcelona, Barcelona is known for Gowdy, who is an architect. And so he has all of his houses that he designed there.
7 (19m 23s):
And when you think about design, he’s kind of like Alice in Wonderland for me. So like he designed the SIGGRAPH Emilia, which is the cathedral there. That’s still in construction, but all of it is very kind of, I don’t know about psychedelic, but it’s the design is so crazy. It’s, it’s a, must-see the house that I would say you have to go to is called Casa. B a T L L O with an accident at the end. And I went there a couple of times, I went to Barcelona and I thought, oh, I’m not going to spend the money to go and tour this house from the outside because the exterior is so impressive. It’s mosaic on the outside. And it has kind of the skeleton faces on the balconies and this dragon on the top.
7 (20m 3s):
And it stands out from all the other buildings that are obviously on the street. And I finally made the choice to go in, did the tour. And it was so worth, I think it was like 18 years at the time, but it was so worth that 18 olds when I was younger in college, I was like, oh, I don’t want to spend that. But no, if you’re going there, you have to go to where the house, you know, get the audio or get a guide because it is worth knowing about the history. And in summer they do, I think it’s called like a rooftop nights. And so you do the full tour, but it’s at night. And then at the top they have live music and you get to drink. So they have like champagne and a concert. So they do that. I think it’s in July and August with COVID.
7 (20m 45s):
I’m not sure how that is right now, but yeah, that’s definitely a must to,
2 (20m 50s):
You said rooftop bar and you sold me on that one.
8 (20m 54s):
And Kim is always about the rooftop bar, but in terms of the big cities and things to do over in that region, we went over that, what would you say is like a hidden region or place in Spain that most tourists don’t even know about? So a real hidden gem that you would say is for sure must do. Even if you kind of have to go out of your way, if time allows
7 (21m 13s):
And is this within the big city or is this getting out of the big city
8 (21m 16s):
Anywhere within Spain, just a hidden gem within Spain, that should be visited, but people don’t really take into consideration.
7 (21m 23s):
And there’s a place called penny Scola and it’s over near Valencia. It’s on the coast and it’s got a beautiful beach it’s on the Mediterranean. So when you think Mediterraneans, like all of the buildings are these just white, it’s almost like, kind of gives like Greece vibe, but it’s like all these white buildings, the full view of the beach and it’s a smaller beach. And really if you’re going there, you’re going there to lay on the beach. There’s no real rooftop bars, but it’s all just beach sidebars, which are equally I think, as good. And yeah, so that’s definitely worth a trip and you can do that. So if you were to do penny school, you might just go up the coast. We did my husband and I did a trip where we went to Valencia.
7 (22m 4s):
So we took the high-speed train from Madrid over to Valencia. And then we went up the coast and just took the train to peninsula. And then we took it all the way up to Barcelona and stop there.
2 (22m 12s):
I’ve heard that San Sebastian is a really cool place in Spain. What do you think about that?
7 (22m 18s):
Oh, it is. It definitely is. Yeah. If I didn’t say finished school, I should have said San Sebastian. I know San Sebastian is beautiful. It’s right near France. It’s got a beautiful beach. Great for walking and the old town, the Costco vehicle, there is very picturesque. It’s very European here in the Basque country. They do pink shows instead of top us. So Pincho is like a piece of bread with something on the top of it. So it might be a croquette or it might be come on with the ham or if they love sardines here. So like lots of sardines, but that goes on the top. And so people eat pink shows here. And the difference between the top and the pink too, is that in like Madrid, you would get a plate of top buzz with a drink maybe like at dinnertime or whatever, or even throughout the day.
7 (23m 4s):
Whereas here in the basketry, you’re going to pay for the pinch of like, you have to each being joke, like you pay for the feature. So when you go to the bars, if you were to come up here to the north, that’s something to be aware of.
8 (23m 15s):
That’s interesting. So their version is almost like crostinis in a way you have the bread and then whatever you put on top of it.
7 (23m 22s):
And I remember coming in and seeing like, they eat something called Gulas here, which are like baby eels. And it was with, you know, the piece of bread with the, what looked like tiny little worms on the top. And I was like, I mean, it’s kind of like imitation crab, you know, like it’s not the real eel because if it is, it’s like, you know, like caviar, it’s very, you know, high end. But yeah, that’s one of the things that they love to eat up here. And, and the bars too, in terms of the pain shows with COVID, they’ve gotten a lot better. They didn’t use to have anything to kind of protect the bar area. So it was just open and now they all have like, you know, the glass that protects the paint show. So that also makes everybody feel great.
8 (24m 3s):
I’m glad that you kind of transitioned this conversation to food because we always love to hit on the flu. That’s one of my favorite things about traveling is trying the local cuisine. So, I mean, you kind of touched a little bit on the top, us the P Joe’s, but what would you say is a must try food for anybody coming to Spain, particularly like, well, what are they known for, for breakfast? I know you kind of already described the lunch, but what should we truly be eating? Even if it’s top, as what specifically within the top, what should we be looking for?
7 (24m 31s):
I mean, I would say Pootiful, which is octopus. Like if you can get a good pupil Diego, which is like a Galician octopus dish, it’s served over potatoes, it’s thinly sliced. It has like a little bit of paprika on the top with heavy sea salt and olive oil, always olive oil, like everywhere you go.
6 (24m 51s):
It sounds so good to me. I love octopus. So this is like right up my alley.
8 (24m 55s):
As you’re talking about all this stuff, I’m worried about Kim’s experience in Spain. It’s not a seafood person. I feel like he just keep mentioning. See, but I know there’s a lot more than that, but
7 (25m 3s):
There is, there is a lot more, so actually it’s really interesting because we went to a wedding not too well. It was a little while ago now after, since COVID, but her husband is from Galicia. So like seafood octopus, and she’s from Toledo right outside of Madrid. So it’s like land cattle. There’s no seafood insights. So at their wedding, they combined the two types of food. And so they had a bunch of ham, which cured meats here are huge. I mean, more SIA is blood sausage, which people sometimes are a little hesitant to eat, but that’s a traditional dish that if you don’t think about it, that much, it tastes wonderful. I just don’t tend to eat it. But that is definitely a meat choice. The cured ham. Like if you like charcuterie boards, Spain is the place to be because it’s not a charcuterie board.
7 (25m 48s):
It is just a spread. Like it is all hands, all like manchego cheese, like harder style cheeses. I will say this. Like if you’re looking for beef, the only place really to go get really good beef, I feel like is go to the states or go to, you know, to Japan for the lagoon or something like that. But Spain, if you’re looking for the cured ham, this is a great place to get it. If you like prosciutto, like from Italy here, it would be called the , which is like a black footed pig. And they only eat a corns. So it makes the ham like very, very good. So if you’re looking for that, I know I was going to go back to talking about fish, but like squeeze.
8 (26m 26s):
No, you can continue with the fish. I want to hear, I was just making the comment that, you know, Kim doesn’t like seafood. I don’t know if she’s going to enjoy Spain too much, but obviously I know there’s more, but please continue with whatever you should be eating when we’re out there.
7 (26m 37s):
I will say, I mean, talking about just fish or meat, like if you are a vegan coming to Spain, you will not have a good, I can say that because it is, I mean, people do not cater to vegan food. They kind of look at you. I remember people who I was studying abroad with, who had asked, can you make that vegan? And people looked at them like they were aliens. Like people here don’t understand like beacon. What is that? Even vegetarian is kind of, they’re not so sure about that either. Like, no, no, you eat, you eat the Hummel. And like you eat, you eat the fish, you eat the meat, but yeah, squid is another one they make it’s called and to be donated, it’s like, it’s the squid. And then they serve it with a puree and they use like ink from the squid, which really doesn’t do anything except give the puree color.
7 (27m 22s):
And it’s like a mix of peppers tomato. And it’s a sauce that goes on the side. So that’s another popular one here in the north at , which is called. And it’s kind of like a saltier kind of Cod is another one is , which is the Bacalao from Bilbao. And that’s like pepper sauce that goes on the side of the fish dish. So, and another thing too, if you’re going to bars, you know, in the Mediterranean or in the north, on the weekends, they do something called bravas. So it would be like the closest thing to like a fried calamari in the states. And it’s like, they’re like little rings and there bravas are a, B, a S and it’s fried, it’s yummy.
7 (28m 2s):
It’s like great to go with a beer.
8 (28m 4s):
So what you’re describing really sounds a lot like to have in restaurants. One of my favorite things really about traveling internationally is the street food, Sr, an American by birth. You know, there’s not really a whole big street food scene in the United States, unless you’re in a place like maybe New York. Right? So what, if any, are types of street food that we can come across in span? I imagine maybe more so in the big cities, like Barcelona, Madrid, maybe not the smallest, but is there anything like that street food wise or is it all more restaurant oriented? And that’s the culture of Spain?
7 (28m 38s):
I mean, I would say it’s bar food is what you’re getting and it’s not like when you go to eat here, people will go in between their lunch break, like in mid morning and go into the, I say bar, but it’s literally, it’s like a small restaurant, but it serves alcohol all hours of the day. Cause it’s thing, I mean, you go in and they always have like tortilla bought Tata, which is like a Spanish omelet and it has egg and a little bit of onion and a little bit of potato, almost any bar you go to wherever you are in Spain will have tortilla. And so you could get that street food. I can’t, I’m not really even thinking because that’s the other thing people do not eat while they’re in motion. That sounds crazy.
7 (29m 18s):
But like they sit down, whether it’s to drink something or to eat something like to go coffee, that was something that started happening with COVID because people couldn’t be out. And so they would start to do this to go thing. I was like, wow, this is great. Like, people are walking around with their coffee because it was the only thing that we could go out and get. But people generally they sit down to eat. So street food is kind of, you don’t really see that. Wow. That’s
6 (29m 41s):
Really interesting. You had a really great list of foods to eat and it’s really made me hungry. But every time you’ve also said like, well, this is great to have a beer or you get like wine. So what are some of the drinks that you should try in Spain? What’s the best wine in the region? Is there like a national drink? Can you give us any insight on that?
7 (30m 0s):
Yeah. I mean, for me, it depends if you’re a white wine drinker, red wine drinker, Red wine. So like, if you were to go to an order of , which is from the area, , it’s a wine region, one of the wine regions in Spain, it’s just south of us and is a good one. And then depending on the type of cancer so that you want, like you can get it to be in barrel longer or shorter. So like, if you were to go for the, get on, did I say diva, it’s been barreled the longest it’s been bottled the longest. So that’s one. And then for white wine, if you like white wine, like a chuckle Lea is known here in the Basque country and it’s a little bit sweeter, but like that’s definitely a traditional wine here.
7 (30m 42s):
The wines are known based on the river that vineyard is near. So another area that’s known for its wine is from rebid Duetto, which is kind of near Madrid area. But if you order it, if you said, I want a wine from or I want a wine from rebate, then the widow, you could get somebody to give you, you know, a wine from that area. And you could, you can’t really go wrong here. Another, a white wine too, if you order a rule, whether R E U D a that’s another one, that’s a little drier if you like white, but don’t want it as sweet. And they also do cider here. So studious, which is just west of us, that’s another province and they do cider and they pour the little bit.
7 (31m 24s):
They pull it like way above their head. You drink like a little glass quickly and you know, that’s something you can get to drink. Cocktails is rum and Coke. So if you like a rum and Coke, it’s called a where the Valencia is another cocktail from Valencia it’s with like orange juice. And I think it’s vodka and maybe some triple sec, anyway, another good cocktail. I’m trying to think if I have any others. I mean, I like to drink, so, oh, and a gin and tonic here in Spain. I know this is, I’m not making myself look in here and gin and tonic, but here they call them a Jean Toni. So they cut the end out. You order a gin tonic and it comes in like a fishbowl.
7 (32m 5s):
So like they just put the ice in and then they just pour, pour, pour, pour, pour, pour, pour. And
2 (32m 9s):
8 (32m 10s):
Well, don’t feel bad when Brittany was saying that the food was making her feel hungry. You, as you were talking about drinks have been making me thirsty and not for water. If you know what I mean. So no judgment on our end over here, but I kind of want to back it up a little bit before we kind of moved on to the wine and the drinks, you had mentioned something very interesting about the food that I always see when I go to Europe and other countries is that they take their food and personal enjoyment and time to have the meals. Like you said, there was nothing really to go and what to go coffee. And it’s more kind of like relax, which had me thinking of a question about culture. We always hear about the CS does in Spain, they stop everything like midday.
8 (32m 53s):
If somebody is coming as a traveler, I mean, can they really expect like, Hey, mid day up until the evening, things are closed. Like, what does that really look like
7 (33m 1s):
In the bigger cities? It’s not as apparent, but in the day to day life, it is noticeable. So like, if you’re in a big city like Madrid or in Barcelona, those the shops are not going to close. Unless, you know, they’re small mom and pop shops, but here in the Basque country, for example, like everything is closed on Sundays, everything except for bakeries, maybe. So if you were to be traveling in the north, up here on a weekend Sunday, you’re not going to have anything to do because everything is closed. So that’s something definitely to be mindful of
2 (33m 34s):
The CS does, if they are closed, what are the hours that they would typically be closed if they do shut down?
7 (33m 40s):
Probably about two to five 30. Yeah. So like, if you’re the hair salon, the seamstress, the post office, the bank, and in summer, some places will close like for the rest of the afternoon. So for example, Saturday afternoons are also not a great time to be in summer because everything closes too. So like Saturday beyond lunchtime, if it’s a shop, it’s probably going to be closed unless you’re in a big city.
2 (34m 8s):
I like that. I like that style.
7 (34m 10s):
I love a CSI. We’ll say this. Like my daughter takes her nap. I take my nap, but I’ve always taken a siesta. Like I generally, if I have the opportunity to lay down and take a nap, that’s my self-care. So, and some people, they won’t necessarily take like a sleep, but they will go home from work and they go home from work. They eat lunch. They maybe watch some TV for a little bit. And then they go back to work or they work out. Some people might work out.
8 (34m 34s):
I just love it because it really gives you that added free time to do stuff in your own personal life. Whether it really be at a nap or run errands, work out, watch TV, you know? Cause I mean, you know, this, the American lifestyle it’s wake up, go to work by the time you come home from your commute. Cause you know, we don’t have high speed rail or any good stuff your day’s done. So I think that’s just one of the interesting things too. And why I love travel is you really see how other people live their lives throughout the world. And there’s always pros and cons, but you can pull a little here and there. And it just makes me think like we should implement something like that here. You know,
7 (35m 11s):
The schools, for example, the lunch, you can have them come home for lunch and then go back to school. So like school ends later, I get ends around five 30 and so they can go home for lunch or they can stay at school for lunch. But if you wanted your kid to come home and have lunch with you every single day, they could come home and have lunch with you every single day. So that’s a pretty cool thing too, about an hour and a half. Oh, pretty good. Lunch break. Yeah. That’s
2 (35m 35s):
Cool. So I’m curious, what is like now that we’re in the midst of COVID like if we were to take a trip this year or early next year, would we get the full experience or things still closed down and maybe it’s better to come later?
7 (35m 49s):
Well, that’s a tough question because I just haven’t been touring Spain. It definitely looks better than it did say in may, because up until may we had a curfew, we had to be in our houses by 10:00 PM and nobody could be out again until 6:00 AM. So I know everybody has had the quarantine experience. Spain is definitely things were really closed off. So now it’s starting to look like there’s no curfew. There aren’t masking requirements right now. I’m like, I get confused because we’re all over the place. They’re always changing the restrictions. So like right now, outdoors, if you can keep six feet, you don’t have to wear your mask, but I’m in public transportation. Everybody has to be masked. So depending on how you feel about masking, if you’re somebody that doesn’t want to be masked, then don’t visit Spain right now because I’m asking is still pretty much required in indoor spaces.
7 (36m 39s):
For sure. And then in terms of, I mean, I know on the Mediterranean coast, things have gotten moving again, but that’s mainly because you can go to the beaches and Madrid, I know has pushed really hard to get things to open back up again. And so you could potentially go to a place like Madrid. Barcelona has been a little bit stricter and their numbers have been a little bit higher, but you could make a trip to Madrid. I think.
2 (36m 59s):
I see. Okay. Yeah. It sounds like that’s following suit with most other places in the world.
7 (37m 4s):
I will say the vaccination rates are really high here. People mask generally. So if you were somebody that was concerned about that, I don’t feel any concern. And actually I felt more uneasy when I was visiting the states. So,
2 (37m 18s):
8 (37m 19s):
We live in San Diego, we go to Mexico quite often. We’ve said on the podcast, sometimes I feel safer with COVID precautions in Mexico than I do here, even in the United States. So it’s funny, you know, everywhere you’re describing how certain places in Spain are, open-close mask, same thing, different states, different counties here in the us. You know, you go someplace else and it’s completely different. So you never know what you’re going to get out of way.
7 (37m 42s):
That’s one thing too, if you are going to travel, I know for me personally, going back to the states and then flying back here, you’ve got to be ready for it to be patient. And also for higher stress levels. I know that for me, flying to the states and at the time it did require a PCR. And so like knowing where to get the PCR, when, if you’re somebody who’s never been to Spain, if there were a requirement on the going back to the us or whatever, if there’s a lot more things that you have to be aware of. Like, I know we flew at the time in June, like mid June, and we had a marriage certificate with us, for my husband, because if we were not married, he could not be traveling into the United States. We flew Delta, but there was nowhere on their site or anywhere except for the presidential proclamation that said you have to have some sort of certificate it’s demonstrates you’re connected to this person.
7 (38m 28s):
And so we would have not been flying from Amsterdam to the states, like they would have stopped us there. So it’s just being aware that you’re going to have to do your research and you’re probably going to have to spend more money if you have to do any sort of testing and just being ready for it, you know, you, you know how it is traveling the unknown, there’s always the unknown. So
2 (38m 46s):
Yeah. Yeah. That’s a good point. So once things are a little more normal in the future and we’re looking to visit what month or time of year would you say is the best time to come?
7 (38m 57s):
Ideally I would say September, September, or October, but I know that’s not ideal with people in school or with work. That’s not necessarily when you have time off, but like September, October, because in Spain it gets really hot. And there’s not a lot of air conditioning. The places that you go to here. So good
2 (39m 13s):
7 (39m 13s):
September, October, it’s still really nice weather. The weather hasn’t turned yet, but it’s not as hot. Those are some really nice times to be here.
6 (39m 21s):
What are the hottest months in Spain?
7 (39m 24s):
Probably July and August. I mean, this year we’ve been really fortunate here in the north, but down south has been getting hit. And last year we had this crazy heat wave, but yeah, like July and August are our hat.
6 (39m 36s):
I’ve also heard May’s a good time to go to Spain. Would you agree with that?
7 (39m 40s):
I would say it depends where you’re going because unlike September, October, you don’t run the risk necessarily of rain. Whereas in may, you may get it depending on where you’re at. So yeah, yeah. Maine even June, but June starts to get a little hotter, but
8 (39m 57s):
One thing I want to bring up while I’m thinking about it and we kind of passed it when it was asking a little bit about Spanish culture, I know the flamenco shows are very, very popular and I don’t think we’ve touched upon it or mentioned it is that truly a tourist trap that still lingers and locals even attend those in everyday life.
7 (40m 17s):
I mean, these locals that live in this apartment do not like, is it something that you could do? Yes. Is it definitely tourist driven at this point? Yes. I mean, I do know for example, I was looking at dance classes for my daughter and one of the options is or Flamingo, which are the two styles of dances. So like they do offer some things. You’re not going to see it here in the north. I will tell you that he will see it. I mean, if you’re down south here, they do Basque dancing. So that’s the big thing, but a tourist. Yeah. I mean, if you want to go see it to see it, I mean, I’ve never been to a bullfight. I will say that I have eaten a bull’s tail though. I’ve not done running of the bulls, but I’ve been to Pamplona.
7 (40m 57s):
I mean, I’ve not run with the bulls. I’ve been to running of the bulls, but not run with them. I mean, there are a lot of stereotypes about Spain and you know, the, the bull fighting does exist. If you wanted to go see it, it’s there. But there are a lot of other things, like if you’re going to go to Spain, like something Spanish is, if you’re going to go out Spanish, people will go out all night, long bars do not close like that. Like you go out all night, like people will come back from going out and eat breakfast together like that. Spain,
2 (41m 25s):
I love that.
7 (41m 25s):
I don’t know about Flamingo dancing, but that is definitely
8 (41m 29s):
Well, that’s why I wanted to ask. Cause I know if you look online, especially guided tours to spangle always include like a flamenco show. And I just wanted to know if that’s something that a tourist trap and obviously it was popular at the time. That’s why it exists still. But if it’s not anything that locals do, is it wise to go as a tourist because at least my style of traveling or our style, we’d love to see certain things that are like the muscle dues, but we always liked to do what locals do because that’s a more authentic experience. And that’s why I had that question specifically.
7 (42m 2s):
Yeah. I mean, it’s a definitely a fair question. Another thing too, people tend to eat paella when they’re here and a good pie. Yeah. You could eat a good pie, but you’re not necessarily going to eat that in Madrid. Like if you wanted to go over to maybe Valencia, they’re known for by. So if you’re going to go to Valencia, then maybe eat the pie. But in Madrid I wouldn’t order pie. So some of the plates that I, the dishes that I mentioned, like you could get a really great dish of octopus. Like that’s going to be much more local than any of the pie that you’re going to get in, plus a, my yard.
2 (42m 33s):
So I have a question. Spanish is the language of Spain, but say you don’t know any Spanish whatsoever. How hard of a time will you have navigating or ordering food or communicating with people?
7 (42m 46s):
I think if you’re in the big cities, you won’t have a problem. Like if you’re in Madrid, you’re not going to have a problem. And actually in Barcelona, you wouldn’t, I don’t think you’d have a problem either. And I mean, I’ve been in Barcelona and they might even be more willing to speak to you in English than they will be to speak to you in Castilian Spanish, because in Barcelona and got the Luna, they speak cut the line, which is different than Spanish. I mean, Spain has several languages, like it has Spanish, but it has , which is the basket language here that we have the Geico, which is from Galicia Ana. They have cut the land, which is from Catalonia. I think even if they would consider Valenciano, which is from Valencia. Oh
2 (43m 22s):
Wow. I did not know that.
7 (43m 23s):
I mean, Spain is very, it’s one country, but it’s got quite the history. So like definitely the language makes the area. So going to Barcelona, if you speak English, they’ll speak to you in English and in Madrid too, there’s usually a thick accent, but I think the younger generations are learning so much English that you wouldn’t have a problem.
8 (43m 42s):
So reverse of Kim’s question then if you actually know Spanish and you go to those other regions, how close is the Spanish to those other ones that you can actually then communicate?
7 (43m 53s):
I would say that if you’re going to Spain, like in the north of Spain, they speak very clear Spanish. If you’re going to the south of Spain, which tend to be higher places for, you know, tourism, it might be more challenging. Like Sylvia Seville, they have a thick accent. Like even for me, going down and listening to somebody from or from anywhere in the Lucia, which is the Southern half of the country, their accents are thick. So like, even if you’re speaking in Spanish, you might be struggling. Like I used to watch a series here. It was called IEA bajo. And they had someone from the north, someone from the Basque country and somebody from the south and the jokes that they would make. And I would watch the show with subtitles in Spanish because I just could not pick up the Southern Spanish.
7 (44m 37s):
They, and even people here joke about it because sometimes they can’t understand each other.
2 (44m 41s):
Oh my gosh, that’s funny. I always thought that watching shows in Spanish with subtitles on would be a great way to learn Spanish.
7 (44m 48s):
It definitely helps. And I mean, depending on what you’re watching, if you’re watching a drama, that’s a much easier place to start then with comedy. If you’re going to watch a comedy that’s like advanced, advanced Spanish, because it also requires some cultural context, like even in English, you know, like you’re going to pick up the jokes differently when you understand the context. So
8 (45m 9s):
It’s very interesting. And that’s, again, one of those things that people just don’t think about, you think of one country, it’s all the same, but so many things different. And you could even say that here within the United States, I’m not going to call out any states specifically, but there are certain states where we make fun of people’s accents and you can’t hear them, but every place in the world is so different, but also have a lot of similarities in that sense. And we just shouldn’t stereotype until we go there and have to experience it.
2 (45m 34s):
I know we said we weren’t going to give you any hard hitting questions, but I do have one for you.
7 (45m 39s):
All right. I’m ready.
2 (45m 41s):
We’ve got to know what the bathrooms are like in Spain,
7 (45m 44s):
Right? You do you want this video on a serious response? Oh man. Okay. Well, I will say this since COVID they have gotten much, much better. And that is saying a lot because I mean, you’ve traveled the world. You’ve seen a lot of world bathrooms. I will say when I first got here, I remember going into the bathrooms and thinking, okay, you always have to check if there’s toilet paper and actually all Spanish women, any good Spanish woman carries Kleenex in their purse, like a little tiny package of Kleenex. And that was something that I started to see. All my girlfriends here would carry this package of Kleenex. They almost expected everyone to have it. So it would be like a bonding thing like, oh, do you have some Kleenex? Like, do you have Kleenex to go to the bathroom?
7 (46m 24s):
Because there wasn’t toilet paper. So there’s a lack of toilet paper. Now there’s a little bit more toilet paper. There was usually no, no hand soap. Now there’s always hand sanitizer. So like there is hand sanitizer. There may or may not be a full toilet seat. Like you’re not going to get a seat cover anywhere in Spain. I will say that you’re not getting a seat cover and yeah, if you could avoid the bathroom, I would.
2 (46m 48s):
Okay. Wow. I was not expecting that.
7 (46m 51s):
I don’t want to be, so I guess I shouldn’t be so harsh, but I mean, it’s not a us bathroom. I will say that. I wouldn’t say it’s like a truck stop bathroom in the middle of nowhere in the us. Like it’s like somewhere in between.
6 (47m 3s):
We’ll definitely repeat bringing my Chevy to
7 (47m 5s):
Spain. What is that? I know what it is. Isn’t that where you like stand up and you can yeah. Okay. Yeah. No, bring that for sure. For sure. Perfect.
8 (47m 17s):
Oh, well it’s funny when you started talking about the Kleenex, it reminds me specifically of when we were in China, because that was the case too, because they have public restrooms and it’s just open to go in, but no toilet. Whereas I don’t know so much of the situation in Spain, but you know, our traveling and Latin America, you have to pay to use a public restroom, but they give you the toilet paper when you go in because they have the attendant like when you pay, right. So are the public restrooms in Spain paid? Like, is it one year old to use or they just open public restrooms like here in the United States also?
7 (47m 54s):
Well, I would say there’s not that many public restrooms, but I will say on the flip side, any bar you go into, you don’t need to pay for a thing. All you need to ask is can I use your bathroom? And they are generally happy to let you come in, use the bathroom and leave. Like I always would feel, I think in the states, there’s kind of this perception that when you go into a business, it’s, you know, a restaurant or whatever, like you have to buy something. That’s not the case here. You can go in, you can go out, you can ask to use their bathroom, like play those that and said, VCO, can I use the bathroom and then leave? Or just even if you just say Bon you, they would probably be like, okay. Yeah. I like, they point you in the direction.
8 (48m 34s):
Well, that’s funny. I noticed you use servicio instead of Banyule originally too. So I was going to ask like, oh, should we use it like in a formal sense and say sort of VCO?
7 (48m 43s):
Yeah. Sydney. Yeah. Yeah, definitely. They would use said VCU.
6 (48m 47s):
So Lindsay, we talked about really big cities, Barcelona, Madrid. We talked about the beaches. Are there any really good nature areas for hiking or adventures in Spain?
7 (48m 58s):
Yes. The Camino de Santiago it’s called the way. It’s a path that you can go on from pretty much anywhere in Spain. And it all leads back to a place called Santiago de Compostela. And it’s in Galicia and there’s a cathedral there it’s, it’s like a pilgrimage. And whether you’re religious or not, this is something that people have done for centuries in the past. It was much more religiously driven, but many people today do it. There roots from everywhere in the north and from the south. And my husband and I actually did it for our honeymoon. So that’s something, if you want to be out in nature, walking around, like you walk with your bags, there are some services that will offer, like to carry your bags for you.
7 (49m 38s):
But my husband being in the military man was like, there’s no way we’re paying for this. Like, I will carry this on my back and carry all of your stuff on my back. So we did that and we did 117 kilometers, which is, I can’t tell you how many miles
8 (49m 52s):
You’ve gotten used to the metric system. Can’t do the conversion now.
7 (49m 56s):
I love it. I love the metrics. And I don’t know, I run a lot. And so I think for me, because when I run the kilometers happen so much faster than the miles for me, I’m like, oh, this is great. Like 1, 2, 3, but the mile. No, no, I don’t feel that way.
8 (50m 12s):
And so real quick here, before we get to our last little segment of our interview here with you, what is your own personal favorite place in Spain and your favorite thing to do in Spain?
7 (50m 24s):
Ooh, that’s tough. My favorite thing to do, I think for me, it’s being so close to the ocean and being able to on a daily basis be next to it. So whether that’s with running yesterday, I was next to the beach all day. Like I ran, I did 13 kilometer run and I went all along the beach. And then I went back later with my husband and my daughter. We went and did lunch. And so for me being right on the coast and also just the bar hopping that you can do here, where it’s like you spend the day, you go have a drink, you sit outside. And a Plaza somewhere that I think is very quintessential Spain.
2 (51m 1s):
And when you say bar hopping, are you bringing your daughter along with you? Is that
7 (51m 6s):
Oh yes. Yes. Kids are in tow, always like, and that’s the other thing too in the states. Like it’s so weird because when we visited, I forgot like you cannot have your children in a bar and here it’s like, it’s not so much. We, they call it a bar. But in reality, it’s a place that has alcohol and also serves food. So like the bar hopping too. I think when you think about wine tasting or bar hopping in the states, it’s always like with the idea of a lot of consumption. Whereas here, even here they do like a small beer. Like you can get a Kanya, which would be like a little bit less than a pint, or you can get a food Rita, which is from the bass country. And it’s like a little half beer. You might get like the half beer and then go to the next bar and get a half beer and a paint show. And then another half beer, like it’s much more lower consumption.
8 (51m 49s):
It’s relaxed. It’s a social thing without the intent of over-consumption I guess in partying. Right.
2 (51m 56s):
I love that. How long are you planning to stay in Spain forever?
7 (51m 60s):
No, actually we’re looking to move back to the states. We’re actually in the process right now of completing my husband’s green card. So he has been in the military. Now. This will be his last year of his commitment. He’s a military officer. And so for us, we were looking at the future and what it looks like to live here versus in the states. My family is all in the states. Lots of my friends are back in the states and for his career as an officer, it’s moving all over the place. And for me, I always wanted like some stability. So we’re actually looking at moving within the next year. If all goes well with our papers
8 (52m 36s):
Back to Boise.
7 (52m 37s):
8 (52m 38s):
Excellent. Like we said earlier, we love Boise. I don’t remember if we set it off here or on air, but love, love, love Boise, fun city.
7 (52m 45s):
Yeah. That’s a great place. It’ll definitely be a change. I think you can talk about culture shock and yeah, my life has obviously changed since I’ve been here. And I think going back, I think nothing has changed, but like I, as a person have changed, I think so it’ll be a change for all of us. My husband’s very excited. He’s ready.
2 (53m 0s):
6 (53m 1s):
As an American moving to another country, how hard was the culture shock and how hard was it to find a job in Spain?
7 (53m 8s):
So when I studied abroad, it was like, you know, the romance phase. It’s like, you know, when you first start a relationship, it’s like the honeymoon stage. And so I definitely, I lived every moment of that first year. Obviously I fell in love too. So there was just so much joy. And then in moving back, it was much more, it was very real life. And so I think that’s when the culture shock really hit me. And like when there are things in the day to day, that happened where in the states things happen very quickly when it comes to whatever paperwork or getting errands run. And here it’s a lot of roadblocks everywhere you go. Like, I mean, even yesterday there’s an Irish bar that we were going to go to and we got there and it’s like, oh no, they’re closed for the month of August.
7 (53m 49s):
So there’s kind of these road bumps that I would hit, especially in the first year where I would be like, why can’t it just be a little bit easier? Like, there’s a lot of what to me felt like a lack of consistency. Like just be open when you say you’re going to be open and don’t leave a sign. Like, but I think over time that’s definitely transitioned into a, I’m so much more patient in just knowing that things don’t have when you necessarily want them to. And you just have to problem solve. Finding work has definitely been a challenge. That teaching position that I got is a very, very cool program available to recent graduates. It’s called the cultural language ambassador program and it’s with the Spanish government and the U S government. And so they send you for a year or they can extend it for, you know, several years and you go and are sent to a public school to teach English, but it’s like cultural classes where you talk about what life looks like in the U S so I was teaching students that would have been like junior high age through seniors in high school, in a public school.
7 (54m 47s):
And so that was a nice position. It was a part-time gig. If you’re going to teach English here in Spain, that’s definitely, that’s the easiest way to go. But for me, I never really wanted to teach English. That was not what I got a degree in. That wasn’t what I was interested in. So I had hard time. There was a lot of pushback too. I mean, I’m in the field of communications. So I live in the Basque country. So the Basque language is something you have to have here. And so for me, it doesn’t matter that I’m fluent in Spanish and English. Like I would have to know Basque in order to be in some sort of media agency or some sort of work with communications or PR had we been in Madrid, maybe that would have looked differently.
7 (55m 27s):
I worked in as a manager at one point at like a sporting goods store here in Europe, it’s called decathlon. And that was definitely an experience. It was a cultural experience. It was, it was definitely a challenge for me. And ultimately for me, sales, I was not interested in sales at all. And so whether that would have been in Spain or the U S I think I could tell you, like, I wasn’t interested in whether I sold more shirts or less. And so for me, that was not a good fit. It was definitely not a good fit, but the job market here has definitely been a challenge. And it is for a lot of people, like, I don’t know what the unemployment rate is right now. I think it’s for people that are, you know, under the age of 40 it’s in the high twenties, 20% ish.
7 (56m 10s):
So unemployment is not just for me as an, you know, a foreigner, but for anyone from here, it’s also a big challenge
8 (56m 18s):
And it was high well before. COVID also, if I remember hearing in the news and everything like
7 (56m 22s):
That, so did, and so this will only exacerbate that situation, which is really sad.
2 (56m 27s):
That is sad. Were you able to do any type of remote work for any US-based companies?
7 (56m 33s):
Yeah. So that’s what I’ve leaned on. And I started working when my husband and I were doing long distance for a year and a half. I worked for a strategic communications agency based in Boise. And so through those contacts, I have been able to maintain contract work throughout my time here. And actually at this point in time, it’s life, right? When you’re, you, you haven’t been doing as much work. And then all of a sudden we’re about to move back to the states. And now I’m doing the most contracting work I’ve been doing. Like the timing is always funny, but now I’m doing much more contract work with companies based primarily in Boise.
2 (57m 4s):
Nice, nice. So with all of our guests, we have a couple of rapid fire questions that we like to wrap up the episode with. Just to kind of get to know you a little bit more before we let you go. So get ready. We have three questions coming your way. First one. What is your dream vacation?
7 (57m 21s):
Cottey. Spain. Really? Yes. Cadiz Southern Spain. I’ve seen pictures. I just want to go. And I’ve been harping on my husband for years. I told them we have to do it this last year. I’m going to cut these so
2 (57m 34s):
8 (57m 35s):
Very interesting. You’ve been all around Spain and your dream vacation yet is still in Spain and that’s one place you haven’t gone, huh?
7 (57m 41s):
Either that or somewhere in Austria,
6 (57m 44s):
Austria is beautiful. I love Austria.
7 (57m 46s):
Where would you go? Vienna.
8 (57m 48s):
Vienna for sure. And Salzburg. Absolutely. And obviously if you want to get someplace in the Alps and remote mountain towns for the scenic nudity. Absolutely.
7 (57m 58s):
All right. That’s on my list.
2 (58m 0s):
Okay. Next question. What is one travel confession that you have to be an embarrassing story or?
7 (58m 8s):
I have so many, let’s see. When I was on a train, we were on a train going from Rome to Florence and my husband, he said like, you’ve got to check out the bathrooms. They’re so crazy. So I went to the bathroom and it was, it was like a very high-tech bathroom, but the doors were automatic. It was just way too techie for me. So I got into the bathroom, but I didn’t even think about how to lock the door because I assumed that the door locked on its own. So imagine I’m in the bathroom. I know. I mean, women know if you’re in a romper, so I’m in a romper. I go to the bathroom, all of a sudden, you know, everything is down and the door flies open to the public bathroom and it’s somebody who was cleaning the train.
7 (58m 52s):
And I died of embarrassment like that. To me, that is something that I won’t ever forget because I just remember him coming back up and down the, you know, the aisle and the train thinking, oh my God, this man, this man just saw me without a romper.
6 (59m 7s):
So, you know, I mentioned that she earlier, I actually took a trip to St. Louis recently and I were around romper. And it’s one where you have to like undo the whole thing to get it off. So it was loosened off on the short section where I use the shadowy, every time I had to go to the bathroom and it worked out perfect.
7 (59m 25s):
I think I need one of those. I probably would’ve needed one of those who wouldn’t when I was there. And then also when we did the Camino de Santiago, because you know, there’s not a lot of places to go to the bathroom, so I definitely should’ve packed one of those.
2 (59m 35s):
All right. And last question for our listeners, what is one insider tip that you can offer to them? Whether that’s about Spain or just travel in general?
7 (59m 44s):
Oh man. I would say, do as much research as you can, but know that as much as you do, there will always be a misstep and just go with the flow as much as possible. And also, I mean, in terms of getting euros or converting Dinair de NATO, I was going to say hurting money. I know things have gotten better in Spain, so you can use your card a lot more than you used to be. So that’s something to also keep in mind, not to say that you don’t want to come prepared and have, you know, cash on hand because that’s always helpful in Europe and especially in Spain, but like it’s becoming much more common to use a debit and a credit card when even at the bakery. So
2 (1h 0m 23s):
That’s great. That’s a really great tip. Thank you for that. And those were our questions. This was a really great interview. You’ve gotten me super pumped up on Spain. I can not wait to visit. I’m hope that next year I can make that happen. It sounds really cool. And I was going to say, let’s meet up, but it sounds like we’ll have to do that in Boise.
7 (1h 0m 40s):
Yeah. I mean, I love to get to California. So I mean, I’ve got a lot of girlfriends that are still in the Sacramento area. So if I ever make a trip,
2 (1h 0m 48s):
Let us know for sure.
6 (1h 0m 49s):
Yeah. And if you ever make it down to San Diego, that’s where we’re all currently now come on down and visit us.
7 (1h 0m 55s):
Yes. For sure. San Diego is beautiful. Like Cornado right. Like it’s been a while since I was down there. So I’ll have to make sure
2 (1h 1m 2s):
Once you need a place to have the beach again, once your bag come on down. Thank you so much for being on our podcast. This was amazing information that we would not have been able to get from the internet. So really appreciate you talking with us today.
7 (1h 1m 18s):
Of course. Thank you guys for having me on the show. It was really nice.
3 (1h 1m 21s):
That was great. Thank
7 (1h 1m 23s):
2 (1h 1m 23s):
If you’d like to connect with Lindsay to learn more about Spain or the creative content and publicity work that she’s doing, you can find her on Instagram. Her Instagram name is at words underscore by underscore w and she is welcoming your messages. And thanks for tuning into this episode. Hope you guys loved learning about Spain. Hope you’re just as jazzed up to take a trip as we are, make sure to follow us on Instagram and YouTube at Travel Squad Podcast and send us in your questions of the week.
3 (1h 1m 49s):
If he found the information on this episode of useful, or if you thought we were just playing funny, please be sure to share it with a friend that would enjoy it too. And as always guys, please subscribe, rate, and review our podcast and tune in every travel Tuesday for new episodes,
1 (1h 2m 3s):
Stay tuned for next week’s episode, we have some more amazing adventures and tips in store for you by.