Eight months ago, this American Expat Family sold it all and moved to Spain. With that choice, we knew there was also a price to pay. The price of leaving behind our family and friends, to love and be loved by them. Would this desire for us to travel impact our relationships with them? I figured this post was most appropriate near Mother’s Day.
“There is only one happiness in life — to love and to be loved.” –George Sand (1804-1876)
We knew we were going to be living in a location in Spain that was an hour away from the closest airport. This airport wasn’t even the most convenient for any family or friends coming from the United States. We knew that if anyone were to come visit us, it was going to be a long journey for them. They would really have to “want to see us” as we weren’t near the well-known tourist destinations of Spain.
Beginning in February they started to arrive! My mother visited for 6 1/2 weeks. Alan’s Aunt, Uncle, Cousins (Hayes Family) all arrived the day my mom left. A few days later we were graced with Alan’s Mom and Mel as well. We were full steam ahead. The Hayes family along with Mel returned to the U.S. The following week Geraldine and Tony arrived and they stayed with Alan’s Mom. We had family and friends here visiting for 10 1/2 weeks solid. Each family member respected our wishes and rented their own accommodations nearby. Each of them was then able to experience life as a local.
We want them all to know that we really appreciated them making the effort to come see us. We know many of them had horror travel stories and it was not an easy task arriving/departing. (Feel free to share your stories in the comments).
We could feel the joy and love when they were here and it renewed our energy, knowing what it is like to love and be loved. Their love and admiration for us couldn’t be hidden and it was incredible. We thank you all for a wonderful time and we miss you.
Here is our family to love and be loved by:
Heidi’s Mom (Bev) – We had fun having Gma Bev just 2 blocks away. It was great just feeling like we lived near each other. We ventured to Gibraltar and you must hear the story about her experience. We also visited Porto, Portugal and enjoyed every minute of our getting lost in the rain.
Hayes Family (Aunt Gina, Uncle Albert, Cousins – Nicky and kids) – We explored our town, hung out in the freezing cold pool, went to Frigiliana and the Alhambra. They enjoyed Seville on their own. Alan and Albert enjoyed going out and “shooting” together. The kids just couldn’t get enough of each other. Family and friends are the BEST!
Alan’s Mom (Linda) and Mel– We enjoyed our 3 weeks with Grandma Linda. Her first week here with the Hayes Family and Mel. The second week we had her all to ourselves to just mesh into our lives. She went with us to Flamenco lessons (almost got her to dance) and to Fútbol games. We enjoyed food, food and more food prepared by Mom!
Then the third week with Tony and Geraldine. We kicked off the week with them by picking them up at the airport and whisking them away to the Feria de Seville. They too explored the local attractions.
Thank you all for sharing our journey with us in Spain. It is really great to love and be loved.