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Spanish bureauCRACY

Friday, February 11, 2011

If you have read Peter Mayles´ book "One year in Provence" you know what we are fighting...
When I read it in Sweden I really thought much of it was fiction, written to entertain the reader, and not his every-day reality. Now I know better!
Should I tell you all my struggle with the paperwork here this blog could be very, very long. Let me just tell you that when we are going to the authorities or going out to buy something bigger, we always bring with us the;

-empadronamiento (a paper from the city hall that shows where you live)
-the latest phone or other bill (to show that we are really living where there)
-NIE number (spanish personal number)
-contract from work
-the latest salaries
-the rental contract of the apartment
-seguridad social (shows that you are in the system)
-the bank account
-last years return

I am sure that I have forgotten something - like we often do with the actual papers... In addition to the stamped, signed and authorized papers we need to have copies with us.

An example of this hysterical paperwork is that we have not been able to PAY bills because we did not have the other persons security number. Twice I was not let to pay the phone for another person because of this. The sum is on the bill but they just refuse to take the money if it comes from the wrong hand. emoticon

Today however I was going to the Hacienda (tax office) to get a certificate, and as usual we took the whole pack with us. But when in the car it hit us that we forgot the obligatory latest bill. Should we go back and get it???
We took the chance and went on without it. emoticon

When we got to the Hacienda there were nearly no queues. I got in line, got my certificate and that was that - without noone even wanting to see any phonebills. WOW! A big moment.

Next we went to the Seguridad Social office to get a card for the EU health system that we need if we are leaving Spain. Same thing here: no queue. No asking for bills or what my fathers name in Sweden is. WOW again!

Funny thing is that my husband started to take out sheet after sheet from our pack and showing it to the clerk, who took a nice long look at it as it was some sort of very valuable information.

After five years in Spain they are starting to treat us as their own! Nice feeling! emoticon
I have never lived abroad in another country - maybe it is the same to be a foreigner in Sweden. I has been some tiresome years I can tell you.
Hopefully they are over and this was not only a very lucky day!

This had nothing to do with weightloss, just life. Well - I have got a lot of exercise running from office to office with all these papers. emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

INGMARIE 2/13/2011 3:11PM

    Well my Dear, so glad you had a friction free visit with the different agencies.Hope that this will be the norm .

as for becoming american, yes you can if you have about $600.00 or so,That is the cost now, and about the same price for renewal of green cards.
Maybe I should have snuck in from the south.? emoticon

Dont get me wrong ,love it here. emoticon

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MIKEAZ 2/11/2011 6:42PM

    My understanding is as an ex-pat you’re not really a neighbor in most of Western Europe until you have been there for ten years or so. One of the things I like about most of America is you can be American as soon as you get here.

In any case I an glad you had such a hassle free day.

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Happy to be back!

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

SP has really become important to me. I understood that when I couldn´t log on for some time. The way it helps me to put my goals in front of my eyes every day makes me do better!
Just wanted to sat that I missed SP and all of you sooo much and that I´m glad to be back!


How easy it is to lose!

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Well, not the weight, but the good habits I got during my first months here! emoticon
I´ve been gone a while, as you may or may not have noticed, due to a visit from Sweden. My family-in-law was here and with them coming my life was turned upside down for a while.
The weather was really bad the whole time so what did we do??! emoticon
Stayed in and ate or went to restaurants to eat. emoticon emoticon

They brought swedish sweets and I had some. The first bite I felt a rush I never felt before, like the sugar made me happy chemically. I never had any problems with addictions but that feeling made me understand it a bit, a lovely and scaring rush. Brr, staying away from swedish chocolate in the future! emoticon

How all this sitting still and eating effected me? I honestly don´t know how bad because I don´t dare step on the scale. My pants still fits but not as comfortably as they did before and as it is february they shouldn´t fit at all. My plan was that they should be way to big by now. emoticon
But that´s life I guess. We had a nice time. They have left and the sun has returned and I´m back here.
I had so many good things going here though, that are now lost. All my streaks are broken! What I struggle with the most is eating regularly and that I haven´t done for weeks.
It felt quite hard to log on here again and have to start over. emoticon

Well, I haven´t just been on my bottom; friday I walked in the mountains for over 3 hours and my pulsewatch told me I´d burned 1200 kcal!!!
The sun was shining, the almond trees in bloom and we had a fantastic view. Sunday I took my husband to the nice track I found some time ago and we walked for almost 4 hours. YES I BROUGHT THE CAMERA AND I WILL POST PICS!
emoticon emoticon

A little sorry resumé of what I´ve been up to. Trying to muster up some energy to start my program again.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MEDDYPEDDY 2/9/2011 1:45AM

    Yes, I have missed you and I am very happy to see you again! You havbe done a wonderful work before and a setback is no catastrophe, it´s just life and you are not ataring over, you are continuing!

There are no mistakes, there are only experiences!

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MIKEAZ 2/8/2011 9:12PM

    The old comfortable bad habits can be the most dangerous. However the Europeans seem to have a much better mix of hiking and outdoor stuff than we urban and suburban Americans.

Looking forward to the pics.

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INGMARIE 2/8/2011 10:29AM

    looking forward to the pictures spring in Spain ,ahhhh wish i was there.
Oh well, spring will come here to but today I am Freezing cold
I am glad you had a good time ,and good food, with the relatives emoticon
I dont think you lost the good habits ,
they just took a nap. emoticon
Dont worry about starting over it will be easier this time, and you are doing great. emoticonstill thinner emoticon
all that walking will help too.
So just enjoy the little visits and your friends,life happens ,and we go on.

PS I love the swedish chocolate too,yum emoticon

Comment edited on: 2/8/2011 10:31:20 AM

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JESSICAPAGE 2/8/2011 10:08AM

    HAHA Nice, your title got me in here. I was thinking really! I don't like you!! 8-)
Sounds like you had a nice time! That is just a part of life isn't it. Sometimes we take a different path at the fork in the road. The nice thing is that we can turn around or just cut across the field to get back to where we want to be. Good for you for starting back up. You will reach your goals.

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Going swedish troll!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

This is the problem:
I promised myself a new hairdo when I had lost a certain weight. Thought it would be easy to get rid of those kilos - but here I am - with a hair to match my origin from the deep forests of Sweden. Or maybe more like Björn Borg 1982.
Neither of the looks are becoming I can tell you.
emoticon emoticon
I have lost sizes and centimetres but the kilos just won´t slip off me. My husband tells me all the time that "muscles weigh more than fat" and that it is a good thing having muscles. Yes, I know!!! emoticon emoticon
But I want my muscles AND my weightloss! Is that too much to ask for?

Do you see my dilemma;
Shall I go and cut my hair and reason that it is ok because I did in fact get thinner?
Shall I hold myself to the promise of the weightloss?

Maybe it will feel better the day I get it done if I wait until I have lost the weight and really treat myself. emoticon
I do not know if that day is coming anytime soon, as I do not seem to be able to lose that last kilo, and does this troll-look do anything for me other than making me feel very out-of-date.
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
Very shallow problem I know, but we all know that we feel like we look...

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MEDDYPEDDY 1/22/2011 1:43AM

    I would go for the haircut... I know that your sort of joking if I take it from my own point of view I have postponed a lot of things "Until..." and "until... " does not seem to happen concerning weight.

Getting a haircut is mostly an enjoyable experience, you are worth it after the good work you put in! And the Björn Borg look?....ryyyys!

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ESPERI 1/16/2011 6:13AM

    Wow, you are serious! Lighten up. emoticon
This is a blog about a hairdo... dont read anything more into it please. It is not an evaluation of my life, the world and the universe - just a little humor from my everyday life. emoticon emoticon

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SVENJAH 1/15/2011 6:00PM

  But I want my muscles AND my weightloss! Is that too much to ask for?

YES, it might be! Maybe it is...or a professional evluation....but then what???? What are your goals, but also what is the motivation behind the goals? What is the meaning of that number on the scale? Why does it matter? How will that affect your life, your energy, your abilitites, your relationships? Will you publish that number on the scale? Will you tell it to everyone? Will it define you, in personality or abilities, professionally or socially?

What if weightloss IS muscle loss? Will you feel better being weak, without muscles and without thinking concentration, but seeing a different number on the scale?

we all know that we feel like we look...

Is that accurate? Many people suffer body dismorphic disorder. Others suffer life-threatning eating disorders/psychiatric disorders because they feel they look wrong.
How do you define yourself apart from the mirror? Who are you, in kindness, actions, and abilities?

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INGMARIE 1/15/2011 1:55PM

    Oh, I just love them swedish trolls, (Bauer drew some wonderful ones)
but I think maybe you should get that hair cut and maybe just maybe you loose a few hekto there too, i think Inches / centimeter losses are more important than pounds/kilos. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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    I think you should do whatever it takes to make you happy.

Had your reward been a bath - you wouldn't wait - - - I hope?

At the same time, check your daily report under my tools - see what your calorie differential is, you might be burning too much or not enough to see a weight loss.

Canned goods contain way too much sodium - this too will prevent weight loss.

Never never never give up! You cannot fail unless you quit.

**P.S. I think you look cute as a button! I don't see no stinkin troll!!

Comment edited on: 1/15/2011 8:59:22 AM

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LINDABENEDICT 1/15/2011 8:13AM

    You are soooo funny ! You do NOT look like a Swedish Troll in your pictures ! Of course, I must admit I have never seen one......If getting your hair cut would make you feel better, go for it !!!!

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I got lost and found it...

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Before the breakout of my cold I had found a track in the woods that looked promising for running. Today at last I went there to testrun it. To get there I have to walk down-and-up-hill a lot so I got there all warmed up and sweaty.
Had to catch my breath and started walking on the new track for a bit. After a minute I started running, for some seconds; the track made a turn and became another hill to climb. emoticon
Well, shame on the one giving up, as we say in Sweden. I climbed on and after a while it was ok for running again. Then suddenly the track ended... emoticon

OK!? I stood there looking at an old ruin. I did not feel like going back the same way so I looked for, and found, a small path heading up the mountain. If I could not run I could as well check this out. It was very steep and at times I almost went on hands and knees. And a lot of thorny bushes!
But having gone this far it seemed stupid to turn around, so I climbed on.

This small path came out on a bigger track again that was perfect for running. I run in the woods, birds singing, sun shining, beautiful olive trees and the rocky mountain as a fond. On the way back I had a fantastic view over the mediterranean sea. PURE HAPPINESS! emoticon

And I was almost turning around when I ended up at the ruin! I would have missed out on all this.
We have been living here for over a year in this village and I discovered this lovely part of it today. So glad I kept going!
Now I have found a track for running - which has been no easy task here.
Lot of happiness and love from Callosa dén Sarrià! emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MEDDYPEDDY 1/13/2011 1:11AM

    Phew – I thought you had been lost in the woods and running around for hours emoticon but the lesson from your experience must be that we need to get a little lost to find our new paths... emoticon

Thanks for writing!

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55TUCKER 1/12/2011 7:16PM

    Sounds fun and made me daydream of running outside in the good weather (but we don't have beautiful scenery like that!). Lots of snow and cold wind here today.
The ruins and that've got my vote for the camera too.....take pix if you get a chance.

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INGMARIE 1/12/2011 12:55PM

    Lucky have a camera? take pix. emoticon

Not much time outside jhere today just a short walk with Max, To COOOLD for
my "swedish blood" emoticon

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SHESTOUGH 1/12/2011 8:18AM

    Girl, I feel like you need to take your camera with you and take pictures of the beautiful places you just experienced! That's so great that you were able to find such a calming, yet beautiful, environment to do your run and get in some much needed cardio! I bet you're going to be feeling it tomorrow, but dang, so worth it!!!

Keep it up!!!

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