The decision has been made about going Overseas. We know we are leaving the states. What we haven’t decided yet is where that will take us. Some of the contenders will be highlighted in the next several blog posts. We have a pro and con list for everywhere we have considered and that will (hopefully) help us narrow it down.
Option 1: Barcelona, Spain
- Romeo speaks Spanish. It’s important for our kids to learn another language and what better choice than a language that embraces their Latin American roots? It’s the third most spoken language in the world. MamaSita needs to learn Spanish, too. Spain seemed like a natural first choice.
- The Beach. We are beach folks. We live about 30 minutes from the beach and we love to be able to dip our toes in the ocean whenever we feel like it.
- Lifestyle. Though Romeo’s roots are Latin American, the Spanish lifestyle is one we could all get used to. The slower pace, the longer dinners, the late evenings and the siestas. Yes, please.
- Proximity to awesome travel. Being in Spain would offer us the weekend travel opportunities to see Europe. When Paris is a train ride away, how could we NOT visit?
- Cost. Comparatively, cost of living in Spain is not that much cheaper than our current cost of living. One of the draws for us to leave the country is that the dollar will go farther in many other places. If we can’t make it go farther, it becomes more of a superfluous choice instead of an economical one. Check out this awesome comparison chart on Numbeo.
- Length of Stay. Spain is in the Schengen region of Europe. Our Visas would last for 90 days. After 90 days, we have to leave. Not only Spain, but we would have to leave the entire Schengen region for 90 days before we could return. Then we could stay for an additional 90 days. That isn’t totally unreasonable, but we would be more nomadic with this choice as opposed to choosing a country and settling there for 6 months or so.
- Catalan Language. There are two official languages in Barcelona. Although 98% of the population speaks Spanish (as a first or second language), all road signs and public information are always supplied in both. It could be confusing, especially for the kids, as they are trying to learn a new language.
- Being a European tourist (Cost, again). While the idea of traveling all around Europe sounds like a fantastic plan, the cost is going to become prohibitive pretty quickly. All of our out-of-town stays are going to be happening while Romeo works for himself building his business. So expensive jets to Paris are going to fall by the wayside in short order.
While we LOVE the idea of Spain, it doesn’t seem like the most realistic choice. So what should we consider next?