The Foreign Office has produced an article on confused callers looking for advice on bizarre issues ranging from where to buy English bacon in Europe, how to recruit a butler in Lebanon and how to avoid nudists in southern Spain. It is an interesting read but I think every expat can recount a story about life in Spain. I remember when we first arrived in Majorca in 1975. Franco had just died and Majorca was not the cosmopolitan place that it is today. We were living in the small village of Puigpunyent, very much a rural heartland. Shortly after our arrival my mother headed to the local village shop armed with a shopping list which consisted of Bisto gravy, Colman's mustard and even Quaker Oats. The lady who ran the shop looked at us in bemusement and thought that we were slightly mad. Try explaining gravy to a Majorcan lady whose experience of foreigners was limited to say the least - and all in hand signals and limited Spanish. We left the shop empty-handed. The only thing "English" that she did sell was this newspaper. Years later my father visited a tourist information centre in Palma asking for help in finding Christmas crackers; the girl replied that any biscuit shop stocked them. I would say that all these experiences are part of the joys of living and enjoying in Spain. Nowadays, British products are readily available across the island but back then it was very different. Majorca has changed but the welcome is the same.


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Mike Richards / Hace over 3 years

British products are certainly available but at what cost?

Your example of Bisto gravy - a long shelf life, lightweight, easily transportable product one imagines - is on sale in the British store in Portals Nous. For four times the UK price.

This is ex-pat Brits ripping off other ex-pat Brits. Little to do with life on Mallorca, mate.