The city of Korca, Albania (pop 75,000).
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Korca, Albania.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Pogradec, Albania on May 12th!

Friday, March 19, 2021

Could we live here?

Thursday was pretty much a day of rest, although we did get out to pick up a few more supplies. Now that we are back to making most of our own meals, there are a lot of kitchen preparation items that we need to keep with us.

And I need a haircut, but I'm not going to go out of my way to get one. We walked by two different barber shops yesterday, but one was more of a salon, and the other already had someone in the chair with a couple of people waiting.

Here's our take from the nearby fruits and veggies store...

690 lek ($8.50 CAD, $6.70 USD) for all of this.

Fruits and veggies are slightly more expensive than they were in Turkey. Keeping in mind that we are still in the city, and they may be cheaper in the countryside. And more expensive than Tanzania, but at least there is a big variety of items.

When we visit a new country, one of the standards as to how we rate that country is based on the question "could we live here?".

Not that we have any intention of settling down in one spot. At least not for a very long time. But eventually the day might come where we may want to... or need to.

What criteria are necessary for our liking?
  • Reasonable prices
  • Good weather, year round
  • Friendly people
  • Good food
  • Scenery and hiking opportunities
  • Mountains
  • Different culture
And we already know that Mexico ticks all the boxes. But what if there is a place that is better than Mexico? How do you know if you don't explore them?

Regarding Tanzania, we enjoyed our Mt. Meru hike and our Mt. Kilimanjaro hike and we enjoyed the area around Lushoto. But after two months in that country, we had had enough. So of course the answer to the "could we live here?" question was a resounding "no!". It is likely that we will never return to Tanzania.

But we have answered "yes" a couple of other times. Turkey was a yes. Spain was a yes. Peru was a yes. Romania would have been a yes, except that they have winters that are not much different than Canada. And the same with Czech Republic. 

And then of course there's the old saying "it's a nice place to visit, but I wouldn't want to live there". Quite a few of the places we have been fit into this category.

We haven't been in Albania long enough to make an accurate decision, but we already think it is going to be a firm "yes". The only downside could be the winter. But based on the research I've done, it's only three months December through February where things could get chilly, and even then we are talking highs of around 10C (50F) and lows around the freezing mark. We could easily deal with that!

Ruth made a delicious roast chicken dinner last night!

Today, we are up early and hopping in the car and going off on our first day trip. There is still too much snow in the mountains so that will have to wait another couple of weeks. We are heading to the coast.

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Record low deal on the popular Anker Nebula Video Projector.

And in Canada...

Nice deal on this popular Bissell Carpet Cleaner.


16 comments:

  1. Another thing to consider is how Hot it gets. "Times are a changing" as the song goes.
    Nice looking meal.
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

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    1. Couldn't agree more! We love Mexico and have done shortish living stints there (one year in Playa del Carmen and 1.5 years on the Yucatan gulf coast). Although there were many things we loved, the weather was just too hot/humid for too much of the year for me. My husband tolerated it better than I. And it's hotter all the time, with more chance of tropical storms and hurricanes. So, both those spots are now firmly in the "nice place to visit, wouldn't want to live there" category for us.

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    2. Yes, this is very true, we don't want to live somewhere where it is baking hot all the time! That is another reason why we wouldn't want to live in Tanzania, for the most part it was just too hot!

      As for Mexico Emily, we would never live anyway near the coast, we would be in the interior and up in the mountains where the air is fresher and next to no bugs. I don't know how you lasted as long as you did down in the Yucatan peninsula.

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    3. Yes, bugs were also an issue. We wouldn't have lasted as long there if we hadn't had a dear friend who lived there, which is one of the reasons we tried that area in the first place. She moved to Merida shortly after we returned to the US, and it's even hotter there, though we do enjoy that city a lot. Could never live there full-time but hope to visit in the future!

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    4. We still couldn't have lasted that long even with a dear friend there. Merida, still wouldn't be my choice of place to live. We really liked Campeche much better but wouldn't live there either, lol. It is just too hot in the Yucatan!

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  2. I’m curious where in Mexico “ticked all your boxes” as a place to live? We’ve been to most of the tourist spots but I suspect you’ve explored more local places. Would love suggestions on places of interest in Mexico that are less touristy.

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    1. We live in a pueblo magico south of Monterrey, Mexico. It's inexpensive, but summers are hot. That said, we have found many small mountain towns near us (we live in a valley) that we would consider living in. Cool nights, sunny and warm days. Two places I would consider in Mexico are Aquismón, SLP and Peña de Bernal, Queretaro or its surrounding areas. Both those towns are pueblo magicos.

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    2. Yes, the places that we love are more local type of places, in fact one is just a small farming town that is a few hours south of Guadalajara. Any of the places that we would live would all be inland and away from tourists and expats for the most part. We love the city of Guanajuato but we won't live in the city itself, instead we thought Dolores Hidalgo was a better spot but close enough for visits and lots of hiking in the area. We also loved the cities of Queretaro and Puebla but again we probably wouldn't live in the cities themselves but find a small town or village nearby. One of the other places that we enjoy very much is Valle de Bravo again, we won't live in the town itself but in the outlying areas. Another spot that we enjoy is Patzcuaro.

      There are really so many options for us but then we are very different from most people wanting to live in Mexico because we just want to live in little Mexican communities, away from the expat crowd and away from the beaches.

      living.boondockingmexico also suggested some great places.

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    3. Thank you to both of you. We hope to have a chance to check out some of these places soon! Ruth, you and Kevin brighten my every morning with your travel updates! Thank you!

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    4. Thank you! We are glad that you are enjoying our blog posts. :-)

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  3. “We are heading to the coast.”

    Now that sounds like a great decision! Tee-shirts and shorts weather. 👍

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    1. Sounds like your enjoying your time there! A lot of interesting things to see, and explore. Take care,Rawn Stone

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    2. I don't think it will be shorts and t-shirt weather for a little while yet but the temperatures should very comfortable for the most part.

      Yes Rawn, we are enjoying ourselves here and yes, there will lots of things for us to see and do in the coming weeks and months.

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    3. Keep showing interesting areas! You 2 are doing a great job, so never mind!

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  4. What about family? Even with FaceTime, I couldn’t live too far from my grandchildren. Will you go back to visit? We are caring for my 94 year old mother right now, so traveling isn’t an option anyway. I am absolutely loving your adventures, and can’t wait until you can pick up that motor home!

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    1. No matter where we end up living we will still visit family or have family come and visit us. As for the grandchildren we are already away from them, so wherever we end up living it really won't be any different, plus by the time we ever settle down they will be all grown up. We have to say though that with all our traveling, we do miss family the most. Normally though, we see them at least twice a year, not sure that this year we will be able to do that because of COVID, same as last year but at least when we did last year it was for more than two months so we got to see them a lot. :-)

      We can't wait to pick up our motorhome either!

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