Culture Shock

I’ve experienced a few culture shocks since arriving to Spain, the first in which I encountered on my initial trip to Spain. As this was my first solo trip flying internationally, I was generally nervous about flying especially with the various layovers and changes in flights. But I was instantly put at ease with how nice Spaniards are. Everywhere I went, people were very friendly and willing to help if you had issues, which isn’t as common among strangers in the US. This was the same for when I landed and visited various sites. People are more willing to strike up random conversations and generally more welcoming.
Another major shock I had was just how safe the city really felt. I felt really comfortable walking from one destination to another by myself or with a friend at any hour of the day which is quite the opposite in Boston. A friend I made here told me this was because a long time ago Valencians were under strict rule with serious penalties for breaking rules so as a result Valencians adapted to living less recklessly even when the political system had changed.
But overall the thing that shocks me most about Valencia, is how relaxed of a lifestyle people lead. I noticed that here, people “work to live” rather than “live to work” which is the common work ethic in the US. As a result, people look less stressed and well rested. Although this could also just be a result of good genes and copious amounts of olive oil.