Brexit, Covid and Barcelona

I’m not sure how it got to October already. The year is flying by. It has been dominated by three things. The main thing for me has been Brexit. It meant I had to apply for Residency here in Spain or, if I left the EU, I would only get a 90-day visa when I came back in again. Luckily, I took a friend called Juan to the government office when I first applied. Basically, all the official did was shout at us. It was horrible and Juan said we should leave but the man did give me another appointment. Juan and I went off to have lunch with his wife to recover. We went a second time and the woman was much nicer but she didn’t seem to know what to do. I had to prove my income was over a certain amount a year and had to pay for documents to be translated. I had also had to buy medical insurance. When Juan’s wife asked how it had gone, we were not sure. However, my application was approved and, after 2 trips to the main police station, I received my card. Yeah! Of course, Covid has been on everyone’s minds this year. I was double vaccinated but didn’t let my guard down. Here in Spain, we had to wear masks everywhere outside our own houses for about a year. We don’t have to wear them outdoors any more but most people still do and we have to wear them in shops, on public transport, in cafes when not eating or drinking and anywhere where there are lots of people around. They vaccinated all the kids over 12 before school started last month but they all still wear masks at all times in school and each class is a “bubble”. They are going to start vaccinating 5-to-11-year-old kids but, again, masks will be worn at all times in school and the classes will be “bubbles”. Last July, I was supposed to visit friends in Barcelona but the trip was cancelled. I finally went there this summer and had such a nice time with friends I originally met in Singapore and then we met up in London a few times after they moved there. Their amazing son was born in London but they moved to Barcelona when he was a few months old. Meeting him for the first time was a joy. At 2 years 5 months, he speaks to his dad in Italian, his mum in Spanish, is learning the Catalan language at nursery and he knows a lot of words in English too. I enjoyed the sights of Barcelona as I had not been there before. I wore 2 masks in the airports and on the planes and I wore protective masks at all times unless I was in my hotel room or at my friends’ flat. (They were both double vaccinated but had also tested positive some weeks before so their immune systems were in good shape!) Not only am I booked to go to Glasgow again this December but my daughter and grandkids here are also booked to go just after Christmas to spend New Year in Scotland. Hopefully, it will be less stressful than my trip last year. Take care and stay safe all.

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