On the fringe

hello, hola  my name is Adele. I've been living near Girona for nearly 6 yrs now . . . I am looking to connect with some of my fellow country peole from America and develop a community of like-minded people. I love it here, but because my spanish is very basic and i don't speak Catalan, it makes it difficult for me to develop a true camaraderie with the locals. AND, i do miss my friends in the States and having a fun chat with them in cafes. So, i hope to meet a few of you soon. Hasta Pronto!

Welcome on board Adele !

I hope you'll make new friends here :)

I used to live in Barcelona, Catalan is indeed almost mandatory to make local friends in catalunya :/ (one day someone told me that I would have to learn the language if I wanted to stay more than 2 years)

By the way, I love this region! (I actually grew up not that far, near Perpignan)

Why did you move there?

Have a good day,


Hi Julien,

Thanks for replying to my post. I've been living in this region (Catalunya) for nearly 6 yrs. Although, we had never planned on being here for that long, life just had an mysterious way of extending our stay.  My husband's work has provided us with the means to be here without full-time employment and without taking away some local's job.  I, on the otherhand, enjoy the vastness of the landscape which we marvel at everyday. We have a huge garden that requires full time care; I maintain a blog-zine and i also produce videos. Our closest friends are those who moved here along with us, plus one french woman who happens to speak perfectly good english and knows some of the people we know from past associations.  All-in-all, it is perfect life, but i miss my family and friends something fierce. I am also feeling the urge to expand my network of friends besides the 3 who are near and dear to me.

So, Julien, you are French and do you speak Catalan as well as English? And where do you live now?

Also, do you know other people in the Girona/Figueres region?



Hi Adele,
I just sent you a private reply, but didn't want to miss out saying I remember the Catalan language requirement. The Generalitat actually offered free language classes while I was there, if you're interested you could check those out. Having said that, I never learned it, but I'm sure my experience would have been better faster if I had.
Looking forward to staying in touch!

Hi Adele,

I miss "north catalunya" these days... well, I grew up in Perpignan, lived and worked in Spain (Barcelona/Madrid) and in the UK, and I am now in Mauritius, a small island close to Madagascar. I had a job offer in 2006 (a six month contract) and I didn't leave the country when I finished my work. I decided to stay and work as much as possible on that little website, trying to help expatriates all around the world ;)

Doris' post is very interesting, maybe you could meet other foreigners at the language classes? It's worth a try isn't it?

Take care,


Welcome Adele,

I used to live in Spain and I can confirm what the others said, speaking Spanish and the local language, in your case Catalan, is really paramount to get accepted by the locals. Have you thought about looking for somebody to do a "language exchange" with. You helping this person with their English and you getting help with Spanish and Catalan? SY

Golden Prague Expat.com

Hello there,

Right now, there isn't a huge problem with the Catalans speaking in Castellano spanish.  But i know that they would prefer us to speak in Catalan for sure.  I don't know, i'm just improving on my spanish and i would rather perfect that idiom then learn a new language.  But i pick up littles phrases here and there and that helps. 

Thank you for your suggestion.

When did you live in Spain? And where R U now?



I lived from 2000-2004 in Spain, mostly in the north west, but also in the Barcelona area, now I am in the Czech Republic and I tell you Castellano is a cake compared to Czech, rofl, SY

I bet!  Czech Republic -- i heard that Prague is quite a nice place, is that so?

Golden city, especially in Spring. SY

Golden Prague Expat.com

Hey Adele,

I'm a Canadian living outside BCN, so not really all that close to you....what kind of videos do you make????

Me again, do you have a link to your blog-zine???

One more time...have you visited the social network on this site?  There's quite a few options there.

Adele, I second the recommendation to learn Catalan! Even though it's not "necessary" for living here, for me it has utterly transformed the degree to which I feel at home. I took one of those free classes from the Generalitat, and starting from a base of knowing some Spanish, and having listened to Catalan for quite some time (as I'm sure you have), it clicked pretty quickly. In my case it of course helps that my husband is Catalan and that's what we now speak with each other and all of our friends, but I would still highly recommend it. Maybe you and your husband could take the course together?

Hi Robin,

I've been picking little phrases here and there, and in my village everyone speaks Catalan, so i understand what they're saying but i tend to rip apart the language so i answer in Spanish. I do agree that learning Catalan would make living here much easier. My husband speaks fluent Spanish and i speak enough to communicate.

Well, hope to meet up with you sometime in the near future after i return from my camino de San Juan.  I leave on the 20th and don't when i will return but i am shooting for the end June.