This week we have Craig Briggs in our Expat interview hotseat. Craig is a popular visitor to Spain Buddy, and his book extols the virtues of Galicia as a potential place to live. Scroll down to buy his book from Amazon… and also to submit your own interview for inclusion on the website. Enjoy!
When did you move to Spain, and where from?
We moved to Spain in May 2002 from Huddersfield in West Yorkshire
Who came with you?
My wife Melanie and our collie-cross Jazz
Where in Spain do you live now?
Galicia in the northwest corner
Do you work? As what?
Work! – I never stop, paid work however; is a little harder to find.
How are you with speaking Spanish?
My Spanish friends would probably say poor and my English friends would probably say not bad. However; given the length of time we’ve lived here and the area we’ve chosen to reside in, my personal assessment would be, embarrassingly inadequate.
If you could change one thing about Spain… what would that be?
A road bridge to the Canary Isles would be nice. Driving is my preferred choice of travel and the Canaries would be great for a winter break. On a more serious note, make it easier for individuals to run their own business and a change in employment law. Changes would make it easier for individuals to start and develop small businesses which would only be good for the economy as a whole.
What is the best thing about living in Spain?
Stress-free driving on traffic-free highways. A relaxed, mainly alfresco lifestyle, the weather, the Spanish themselves and their attitude to life and last but not least their world-beating National Health Service.
What is your favourite Spanish dish?
- Galician fillet steak (al punto)
- Local chorizo, my neighbours lettuce and her tomatos and her eggs.
- Carne asada (slow roasted on the bone)
- Merluza (hake)
- At the seaside, just about any grilled fish but my favourite is lubina (sea bass). The list goes on…….and on.
What is the predominant nationality of your friends in Spain?
We’re the only English people in our village so on a day to day basis they’re all Spanish; but we have a number of English friends and Maria – she’s Maltese.
If you won the Euromilliones – would you still live where you currently are?
I’ve never done the lottery – the thought of winning a jackpot scares me to death.
If a movie was made about your life – who would play you?
Brad Pitt – I’ve always fancied being handsome, athletic and adored by millions. It’ll never happen though.
If you had to describe yourself as a sandwich filling… what would you be?
Cottage cheese and After Eight mints – Unique and a little wierd.
Right – now is the chance to tell us all about your business/website/blog if you have one (or more of course). Go for your life!
Let me tell you a little bit about Galicia. Described by Chris Stewart in his memoir, Driving Over Lemons as, ‘rain sodden Galicia’ I can only presume that at the time of writing he hadn’t visited the province. From mid May through until October the weather is idyllic: hot sunny days and comfortably warm evenings. Combine this fact with Galicia’s natural beauty and cultural and historic past and you have a unique and appealing holiday destination; and the perfect place to live.
With this in mind, in 2006 Melanie and I bought a ruined farmhouse in the sleepy village of Vilatan and set about creating a luxury farmhouse rental we named Campo Verde. In 2008 our first guests began visiting.
Click on the following link to find out what those guests, and many others since, thought of their holiday in Galicia and their stay at Campo Verde. http://www.getaway-galicia.com/guestbook-comments.html
My career as a part-time cleaner and all-round handyman affords me the opportunity to explore other interests. In 2004 I began writing a weekly freelance column for an online magazine (the emphasis being on free). This interest led me to finally publish a book in 2013: entitled Journey To A Dream, it tells the story of our first, difficult year living in Spain – the ups and downs, and the highs and lows. If you’d like to read our story, the following links will take you to Amazon
I also write a regular blog about our life in a remote Spanish village and about Galicia in general. Why not subscribe to receive my latest updates – it’s absolutely free, just follow this link: http://www.journeytoadream.co.uk/blog
You’ll also find me on my facebook page; and everyone is welcome http://www.facebook.com/craigbriggs.spain
Elle, along with Alan, is the owner of Spain Buddy and the busy web design business – Spain Web Design by Gandy-Draper.
Born a “Norverner”, she then spent most of her life “Dann Saff” before moving to Spain in 2006. Elle’s loves are Alan, the internet, dogs, good food, and dry white wine – although not necessarily in that order.