Most north Europeans who move here, and I include myself in the group, do so for a better lifestyle. Canarians seem to be better at achieving a good work / life balance than those of us from cooler climes.
- The siesta is still observed by many businesses here
- Lunch really does take an hour, sometimes two
- Most shops remain resolutely closed on a Sunday, meaning you either end up spending the day having fun with friends and family, or simply chilling
- There isn’t the same need to express your success with designer clothes or the latest flashy car
- Plenty of businesses close down for weeks or even a month in the summer, so everyone can have a holiday
- Most people don’t get too concerned if you’re five or ten minutes late for an appointment
- Morning coffee isn’t a cup of instant grabbed at your desk, but is a stroll to the nearest café for a natter and a freshly brewed cup of the good stuff
- Fruit and veg are bought in season and are often organic – you can’t get everything all the time, they can look odd, but they taste delicious
- Health and safety hasn’t gone mad here – generally people are treated like the grown ups they are
Of course, depending on what you need to do, all of the above can mean intense frustration at times – when a shop is closed for no apparent reason, when you need to buy something on a Sunday, or if the guy you’re meeting is late and leaves you wondering if he’s going to turn up.
And there are those who would try to change things
- “We need bigger, better shops on the island!"
- “They should put up warning signs!"
- “Don’t they want to take my money?"
- “The bureaucracy is driving me crazy!"
- “We need a better ______"
- “I wish there was a Starbucks in Lanzarote."
Sometimes, we need to pause and remember the things that attracted us to live on the island in the first place.