British Gossip

Ok, here we go. Its been coming for a long time and its appropriate that now the record gets put straight. This is a general over view of what you can expect when moving to a small village in Andalucia with a growing concentration of English ex-pats.

Unfortunatly some expats seem to be so bored that they start off their own rumour mill, not unusual I know, happens everywhere in fact not just here in Spain. The problem is that with such a concentration of expats (some of which you would have had absolutley nothing to do with in the UK) tongues start wagging and it is impossible to keep yourself to yourself. It is incredibly difficult for some people to understand why others dont want to sit in a British bar all day or attend the expat club every other weekend. Now thats fine if thats your thing but dont slate others for not wanting the same kind of lifestyle you do... After all we are in Spain and others would like to mix into the Spanish life to varying degrees - thats up to them.

One thing you can almost certainly expect is to hear totaly false information about yourself from someone else who heard it from whats his name. Again this is normal, human nature even but it makes you think when you yourself have not given any idication to anyone about the subject they are waffling on about. Some are tagged "anti English" because they dont want to attend every British barbeque that gets arranged, some are tagged "Brits in the sun" because if the UK was hotter they may not have moved to Spain. All of this is of course rubbish but is a healthy basis for scathing others with ridiculous and down right stupid opinions.

Some people are even leaving, coming from the coast to escape the "little England" culture they find themselves in an even more concentrated culture of back-stabbing and rumour. One such person recently said "I,m just sick to the back teeth of all the crap, you cant live your life without some idiot trying to rip it to peices" a pretty strong opinion. It is apparent that some people just cant help it and its a bit dissapointing considering that in the main most peoples motivation was to start again or improve their life by relocating to Spain, why try and tarnish that for others who are here for different reasons than your own? - what goes around....

Prehaps its time to settle down and respect the fact that some people want to live the Spanish life, or a bit of Spanish and English or whatever mixture they choose. It can be and is very dangerous which can be over looked by someone with a huge mouth until its too late.
Ignore it? well yes, probably the best thing to do. However in these small rural villages dont expect to live the idilic Spanish life without some expat mars bar talking about you behind your back. Stories and rumours dont dissolve over here like they do in the UK.

For the record/examples:

*My business is healthy and "I" am not selling horse sh*t instead. (you know who you are)

*I am not and have never claimed to a professional builder - the blog is a guide, you make your own mind up.

*I am not going back to the UK.

*I dont speak French

*My cave is mine and not my neighbours (yeah, many thanks for that one)

This post too close to the knuckle? give it 6 months....

comments welcomed.


Pebbles said...

Mac, Every time I read your posts I totally agree with you, there is always going to be someone who isnt happy with what you are doing (and I have come to the conclusion it is pure jealousy!!).
Since moving here I have been congratulated for being pregnant (too much tapas nothing else!! and also there have been sightings of Ramon and my sister very close in a night club!!) well we have only ever been to that night club the once, on our first night out and we both realised we had outgrown them so when on earth did my sister have the time to fly out from UK and be seen in a romantic embrace with Ramon I don't know!!!!

I do wonder why people go in Brit cafes for a mug of instant coffee when they could be in a nice spanish tapas bar but then I am bringing myself down to the same level. If that is what they want and they are happy then great but please don't criticise those of use who try the Spanish way!!

Anyway we should just enjoy what we are doing and let everyone enjoy what they are doing (and stop the back bitching - life is too short!!)

Kate xx

Anonymous said...

CR, your post is very pertinent and I agree with Pebbles, life is too short to worry about what other are saying.
It seems to be a crowd mentality whereby, if you don't join in, you think you're above your station. And if you are trying your best to integrate, you're a turncoat!
I know from what you've achieved in Spain that you come across as a free spirit! And free spirits have no time for wagging tongues!
Keep up the good work and bugger the rest!
Cream (Blogger is playing up again!)

Pebbles said...

Just to add to what I said about gossip - Those comments made about me and Ramon were actually made by Spanish people so it is safe to say wherever you are or live there will always be someone that will make some gossip about you.

I think it is true to say that some families have a lot of jealousy surrounding them, we always have had as a family, no matter where we lived we always heard nasty gossip/comments. I don't know if those people perceive something we haven't got or they think we are rich (and that is because we always hold our heads up high even though our purse is empty!)

I beleive some people are not happy unless they are putting down others (maybe in a way they are making their own crappy lives seem better).

As long as you know the truth and it isn't harming you, your reputation or your business then let it go - however if it is damaging then put the record straight with the person and tell them to shut it!!!

rant over xx

Spainblog said...

Hi Guys

Had this sort of conversation so many times, not only here in Spain but back in the UK too. It is almost like a small town mentality. I have several schools of thought on this one, and I think that they are applicable in different situations.

Firstly many people who have moved here, have way too much time on their hands, and they see someone getting on with things and not needing the emotional crutch of fellow brits, and this makes their minds work overtime, as they try and work out why. Unable to come up with a reason which is satisfactory to their small minds, they either imagine or invent a reason, which in effect makes them feel better about their position.

Some people need to be the ones that think they know everything, and if there happens to be, not a shred of truth in the stories they are promoting, this is of no consequence, as they live by the premis that there is no smoke without fire.

Another reason may well be that some people are jealous of your achievments, and your seemingly easy intergration into the Spanish way of life, whereas they may be having problems. These people may also believe that they are better than you and their egos cannot cope with the plain fact that someone is doing it better.

The list is pretty enless of possible reasons why certain people feel the need to promote or even start rumours about other people. One fact is plain, and that is that these people are unable to be mature enough to live and let live, and to accept that we are not all pack animals and do not all feel the need to congregate and socialise with 'our own'.

Got to agree with Pebbles, if these rumours are simply petty and silly then just laugh them off, however if there is any malice in them or they are potentially damaging then I would nip them in the bud. You know me CR I call a spade a spade and a shovel a shovel, and I do not suffer fools gladly, as you know I had a small inccident recently and I would not say I went off it, but I certainly did not leave the perportrator with any doubt as to my feelings nor my position.

Carry on with the way you are doing things mate, if it ain't broke, don't fix You are living the life and reality, a lot of the rest are living the dream, and their dream is turning into a nightmare and biting them on the arse.

cave renovator said...

Pebbles: Agreed, life is way too short. Its just a pity that others dont seem to realise and waste their time sticking the knife in. We all know of the little "groups" in various villages - would I want to be part of that? thanks but no thanks!

Cream: Thanks for your comments, "bugger the rest" is the best way to go, to ignore it, however all expats get tarnished with the same brush which makes it extra difficult to intergrate. Its a good job everyone knows us in our village but when we go further afield we immediatly enter a different catagory.

Pebbles again: Rant all you like - just thought I would bring the subject up so people could vent a little steam.

Spainblog: You have hit the nail on the head with your comments. Its beyond me though why some of these individuals feel this strong urge to bring others down (if they can)Makes the world go around I suppose.

Pebbles said...

Cheers for the post - it has made me feel great having a rant!!

Emilio said...

It seems that there are people who has integrated in the Spanish society too fast, since gossip is as Spanish as bullfighting or paella. You only have to take a look at the Spanish TV and see that all channels dedicate most of their time to gossip. You see, it was Spanish people who started rumours about Pebbles and Ramon.

cave renovator said...

Emilio: Fair comment. The people in Orce talk about the "Brits" and people are people so it is not to be unexpected. I dont try to be Spanish at all - just mix into the culture of the country I have chosen to live. Its a bit dissapointing that other expats cant handle this. Afterall "us expats" are in general all in the same boat depending on our reasons for being here in the first place.... What would be wrong with a fair view of some people thinking "I am here for my Brit community and my pizza and ok, others are here for paella and to learn the language"

Surley its about respect for other peoples views and reasons for being here. Unfortunatly some people take a dislike to any brit who seems to enjoy the Spanish way of life and its rural culture etc. To be honest it doesnt bother me at all because I know why my family is here, on the other hand when people make a general unfounded comment about my family ie: my 4 year old son and my wife then someone needs to put back in line. Some comments cant be ignored....and all from the civilised english expat...

Mme Cyn said...

Cave -- I read your blog with amusement (I live in Dubai and happened upon you through Little Yellow Duck). Expat communities are the same everywhere!

Cheers for keeping my own little expat grumbles in perspective!