Kyiv: First Impressions

Kyiv: First Impressions

(♦) Kyiv is 1,500 years old, give or take a century, and boasts an enviably deep line-up of historical draws. Tally ’em up: two UNESCO world heritage sites, the Kyiv Pechersk Lavra caves monastery and St. Sophia’s Cathedral, both tracing roots to the eleventh century. St. Michael’s Golden-Domed Monastery. St. Volodymyr’s Cathedral, St. Andrew’s Church,…

Visit to Ronda, Spain

Visit to Ronda, Spain

“You’ve got a lot of nerve,” a native Spaniard might tell me, “to book a tourist trip to inland Andalucia in August.” True. I’ve lived in Spain three years, know better. Andalucia cities regularly rack up summer scorchers north of 40° Celsius. (104° Fahrenheit. Ow! Ow!) I’ve listened wide-eyed as natives swapped anecdotes on surviving…

Spain Taxes for U.S. Expats

Must we? Didn’t we Yankees endow earthly civilization with the Big Mac, Love Boat re-runs, the Chia Pet? Isn’t it enough that we grace Spanish soil with our Stetson-crowned, Buckaroo-booted presence? Must we submit to the indignity of expat taxation, too? I’m afraid so. Presume yourself to be liable for a Spain tax on worldwide…

Ximena of Barquisimeto, Venezuela

Lucky ol’ me meets many people in Madrid: moved-to-the-big-city Spaniards from Extremadura, Andalucia, Asturias; EU-wandering Erasmus students; watchful-eye-on-Brexit Brits; young Auxiliares de Conversación, often from the States; expats for hauls long and short, from Australia, China, Bulgaria, hither, yon, beyond. They talk to me. (The fools!) Some chats are guarded, surface-y. Others far less so.…