Foreign: Not all those who wander are lost

There are no foreign lands. It is the traveller only who is foreign. ~ Robert Louis Stevenson

map of the world sculpture

This simple sculpture of a world map (mapa mundi) can be found within the grounds of Málaga´s Botanical Gardens.

Being an English expat living in Spain, many things that I once might have considered foreign, have now become the norm.

Besides, the concept of “foreign” is all relative, isn´t it?

So, here are some things that you might think are foreign, but which are now part of everyday life here in amazing Andalucía!

Spanish writing on tee shirt

This young girl was wearing her Yo Soy Español  (I am Spanish) tee shirt to watch the Spanish national team play football on TV during Euro 2012, at the La Noche de San Juan celebrations.

Sunshine, sea and palm trees

Sunshine, the blue Mediterranean Sea and palm trees off the Balcón de Europa in Nerja, Spain.

cactus flowers

Stunning yellow blooms of a cactus plant.

Spices at a Spanish streetmarket

Herbs and spices for sale at a Spanish street market.

Delicious paella, freshly-made each day over wooden fires.

Spanish street sign

Street sign in the village of Torrox, which claims to have the best climate in Europe (mejor clima de Europa).

This post is my response to the Weekly Photo Challenge: Foreign.


Other photo challenges you might enjoy:

CBBH monthly Photo challenge: Windows

Travel Theme: Curves

Weekly Photo challenge: Near and Far


48 thoughts on “Foreign: Not all those who wander are lost

  1. I met an old Catalan guy at a bus stop in Argelès, France, who talked to me in Catalan. He doesn’t speak French even though he’s lived in France for 50 years. He told me he was from Andalucia, and said it several times, each time holding his right arm up over his head in a graceful gesture. He was very friendly, and shook my hand when we got off the bus. He was friendlier than old French men!

  2. At first I was slightly miffed at having been left off the world map (Canada) but at the same time, it’s kind of nice to feel unobliged to attend the party … 🙂

    • It´s surprising how quickly one settles into a new country and way of life, once that big decision has been made.

      It´s always lovely to hear your thoughts, Madhu 🙂

  3. wonderful selection – love the herbs and spices
    and one of my favourite quotes – we painted four lines from Tolkien (including the ‘not all those who wander are lost) round our dining room ceiling in a house we once owned – we were obviously destined to travel eventually!

  4. A wonderful selection of photos to represent the challenge. I can’t believe the variety of herbs and spices. I would have to take many, many of them home with me. The photo with the arch that showcases the Mediterranean Sea is breathtaking. A super wonderful place to be. You, certainly, enjoy the fabulous culture that is all around you; a blessing indeed.

    • My cupboards are stuffed with different herbs and spices, but I love cooking, so they are always being used.

      The archways are at the entrance to the area known as the Balcon de Europa (the Balcony of Europe) in the town of Nerja. It´s the busiest tourist area in this part of the Costa del Sol, east of Málaga.

      Thanks for your lovely comments, as always, Izzy 🙂

      • My cupboards would be full, too. I enjoy cooking and find that my food tastes better than restaurant food. Of course, I do have a few favorite places we love to go to. The problem with eating out here is the portions. They are quite big and I like small tid-bits. I think that it is why a nice Tapas Bar here would be my place to eat. ~~~~~ : – )
        Your posts are always so fascinating to the eye and appetite. Keep them coming …..Izzy

  5. Ah yes, Nerja, I’ve been there a few times and even visited the caves! Also the place where I last got terribly sunburned because I forgot to put on enough sunscreen on my legs. It was also 100% cloudy that day. My legs peeled for months!

    • The caves are a big attraction around Nerja – I´ve visited them a few times with visitors 🙂

      OOHHH dear – well, I´m sure you won´t make that mistake again. Hope there was no permanent damage Amelie.

  6. Beautiful showcase of foreign. With the far parts of the world becoming more and more connected by the Web, travellers/expats, foreign is becoming more familiar but cultures such as Spanish, as you have illustrated, will always have a distinct ‘flavour’ 🙂

  7. I so enjoy all the beautiful photos of your enchanting home country (that map sculpture is a work of art), and you’re so right—places are only foreign until you get to know them. That’s why I had such a hard time coming up with something for this challenge.

  8. It is funny how once’s perspective will change and how things that were once foreign can become commonplace. I’ve even noticed it when on holiday. The photo overlooking the water, beach, and palms is beautiful, and very reminiscent of a foreign locale. We don’t have many palm trees this far North. 🙂

  9. It’s amazing how quickly we get used to the differences and they become normal. I noticed it particularly this summer in Vietnam, Initially everything was foreign and remarkable but within a matter of weeks I found myself becoming blasé about many of them.

    It’s like when you go on a safari. The first impala you spot is amazing, and a zebra even more so, but after a very short time, you’re like, “Meh, it’s only an impala, give me lions.”

I´d love to hear from you, and much appreciate your comments. Thank you.

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