The awkward turtle

Celebrating the failings of a successful person


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Welcome to Barcelona: The Flat Hunt

Welcome to Barcelona, the city of dogs and their devoted owners.

I’m qualified to welcome you to this vibrant European city now that I’ve been here for a month. This month has seen me busting out my rusty Spanish and inflicting grievous harm on innocent spanish speakers as I attempted to secure our new permanent digs in the city. My morning routine looked a bit like this: wake up at 8.30 am, pick up the laptop sleeping next to my bed and scroll through my go-to piso search sites (Idealista, Habitaclia, Fotocasa), send off initial contact requests for anything I quite fancied and, if it was a particularly dry day of fishing, things I just vaguely liked. By 10am my phone would have started ringing; calls from agents I contacted the day before to arrange a visit. A normal conversation would go like this (rough translation into English but imagine the speed at x5 in Spanish): “Good morning you have contacted us regarding a property with 2 bedrooms is about 60m2 and it’s unfurnished…”, my only response to the initial onslaught would be “Donde?”. I would send so many email requests that by the time people got back to me I couldn’t tell one property from another, all I could say was “Sure I’ll come see it”. On the occasions that I had to initiate contact (and this happened daily) I would have to do my prep: giving myself the “you can do it talk. They don’t know you, it’s completely fine. You can make yourself understood just pick up the phone.” Going over my opening sentence in my head whilst listening to the ringing tone. I tried a more hands-on approach which saw me walking around different areas with my head tilted up at a 45 degree angle trying to spot alquiler or en lloguer signs on buildings. Whilst I did end up with a stiff neck I would recommend this method as it’s a great way to explore the city and stumble upon hidden gems.

Now 4 weeks later, 3 apartments that got away and only 2 days left in our designated Airbnb room,we have finally found a place. Albeit, we won’t have it for another Continue reading