The best 5 songs that describe our British Adventure

June is a great month for us, summer is getting closer, holidays back home are getting closer and we mark our anniversary of this British Adventure. So this time we’ve thought we will share with you the best 5 songs that have helped us cope with the challenges of immigrating and settling in UK. Those songs that had a positive effect on all of us. Here we go:

#1 Impossible, James Arthur’s version

Ok, we know now this is a love song of a break-up story BUT on our first year, 2013, right before coming it became quite popular in Spain and for us hearing the word IMPOSSIBLE meant that we were turning the tide against all the challenges of leaving our home and adventuring ourselves to a new country. For us, it seemed “impossible” but we made it!

#2 Do you hear the people sing? from Les Miserables

You can see, we are quite dramatic in this family, LOL, but in a time when we were facing my husband’s unemployment in UK due to sorting out his residence status, THIS was the right song for us. Was England playing the role of “France” and we were raising against the injustice? Maybe, we felt like fighters anyway, and at the end, we overcame that rock as well.

#3 Don’t worry from Madcon feat Ray Dalton

Aha! we like to party (party-parents) of course, we don’t go wild anymore! haha but we heard this song on our first Summer holidays in Barcelona, and yep…we definitely felt like we didn’t need to worry about a thing! Beach, sun cream, family, friends…and “party” all day 😀 The pleasures of coming back home.

#4 Hace calor from Estilo Libre (It’s getting hot!)

No worries, nothing dodgy in the video! just another Summer hit we heard in Barcelona. This song though, we like to sing it here in Manchester every time it gets really cold, hailing, snowing or raining… we turn on the car and listen to this song! The irony of it helps us go through the bad weather and have a laugh about it. See, reverse psychology 😉

#5 Wrecking ball from Miley Cyrus

No need to show you Miley half-naked so this video will just work fine. Why do we like this song? Well, you can laugh about it, but I gave birth with this song! haha, seriosly, I was feeling like a “wrecking ball” about to “wreck” so in the hardest time Miley was there LOL

In my family, J and I are music lovers, while Sam doesn’t bother that much, unless for Les Miserables (he can be hours listening to the Soundtrack) but I think and feel that music has the power to bring you back to a place, to a memory, to somebody. It helps you ease the toughest challenges, it can uplift you when you’re feeling down or make you have a great time. These are not the only ones that have marked this adventure but just a few. I know we’re still building our own “soundtrack” so who knows which ones will come in the future…

What about you? What are those songs that had an impact on your life?

 

 

10 things we have learnt after living in UK for 3 years

We are getting very close to our 3rd year anniversary of this British Adventure, so even though we are not experts on the matter, we can still share with you a few things we have learnt so far:

#1 Manchester is London, UK is London, always.

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When you move to UK, it doesn’t matter if you told family and friends you’re going to live in Bristol, Cardiff, Edinburgh or Manchester, you are always relocating to London. So every time they ask you, they will always say “How’s it going in London? -No, I live in Manchester. -Yes, I heard “London” is a big city”… ALWAYS.

#2 Be polite, even if you don’t really mean it.

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So, you will say “Thank you”, when you get of the bus, even if the bus driver tried to kill you and didn’t even left you close to the bus stop. You will say “sorry” when you’re in the store and you were a “bit” too close when trying to overpass someone on the aisle. You won’t raise the voice if you get really mad at someone, you will just stare at them, thinking what you would do to them if you could, and then after a dramatic pause, turn around and go.

#3 Fish and chips and Beans on toast

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It’s what it is: fish AND chips, beans ON toast. There’s no magic flavours hidden behind these so well-known British cuisine. No surprises, crystal clear, you will get what it is: a piece of fried fish with French fries, or a can of beans pour out over a toast. Is it good? Is it not? we’ll leave it to your palate to decide.

#4 The absence of rain is GOOD weather

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If it’s not raining it’s good enough to do all sorts of outdoor activities, -please, advice to new comers, never wait until it gets sunny or you might end up enjoying yourself just 3-4 days of the year! trust us on this, no rain is good enough.

#5 along with that, you will never wear an umbrella with you

We found out about that on our first year, it seemed like magic, but we would be soaking wet and everyone around would be completely dry, how? we still don’t know! we thought maybe the weather was being a bit racist…haha, jokes apart, you seriously don’t need an umbrella, just a hoodie. It’s all you need in this crazy weather.

#6 There is more than one type of curry

Before, we only had heard about a few Indian restaurants in Barcelona and that was about it, never tried curry or any Indian food. Since we moved here we have learnt to prepare our own Korma curry and we can distinguish many other flavours. Now I know what ginger is for! haha

#7 Every Spanish food must have chorizo

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Apparently, according to Tesco, Asda or even La Tasca, paella must be cooked with chorizo, if you want “Spanish chicken” must have chorizo as well, AND be spicy! It’s one of those misconceptions that I don’t know who initiated here after probably travelling too many times to Majorca or Benidorm.

#8 You will always give a card on Christmas

It doesn’t matter if you personalize it or not. (we’ve been given empty cards, no name on them, at all, that we could actually use ourselves to give them to someone else) haha No, no, we would never do that! but yes, cards are an important part of British culture. You can say anything with a card. Say sorry, say I miss you, congratulations, to the big brother, to the auntie, to grandma, to your boyfriend, seriously…they cover all range of topics, and of course, Christmas is a perfect opportunity.

#9 You will get to know a British layer after layer

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They won’t show you all at once, you will only get to know them little by little, cause what it would seemed a cold person, might be the tenderest one, after delving deep into their hearts. And who you thought you would never get along with might become a true friend and help you in times of need.

#10 Generosity is a frequent attribute in these isles.

There are many ways to fund raise, many causes that you can be involved with, many people willing to help, they might stop you on the street, or you could start your own campaign, and people actually donate. Of course, everyone is different, but as a general thing, we have noticed this in more than one person we have come across.

The list could go on and on. We are still learning so many things. Immigration is one of the best ways to grow in all the sense of the word. Adapting to a new culture, new people, new places is hard, and now I know that unless you have experienced it for yourself, you’re not able to understand what it feels. You can find all sorts of barriers, language can be one, but won’t be the only one, but when you get to overcome them, and laugh at your own mistakes, you are able to see the forest with the right eyes, and you just forget of the tree.