The other day I purchased a certain item on the internet from a reputable company in Spain; I have done so regularly for sometime, using their secure page. This time, on the next day, I received a phone call from an employee of that company to advise me that the item could not be sent because the credit card payment had not been received, leading me to give my details again over the phone so that the matter could be checked out.
I thought it rather odd and refused to do so because I remembered that you must never give such information over the phone or over the internet unless you know the person or use a secure internet page. I called back and, convincingly enough, yes it was a phone number of that company and yes I spoke to the same person again. After a brief altercation, I hanged up to call the main switchboard and speak to someone in charge. I then discovered there was no problem, the credit card had gone through and the item had been sent on the same day of the order. The matter is now being investigated by the company.
I believe it is right that most people do not readily believe what they are told and I am sure you will all say that this is quite understandable, particularly on the Costa del Sol, which seems to have acquired a certain reputation of late.
However, what really amazes me is how easily some people are actually willing to believe the blatant lies they are told and how easily they actually fall into the hands of the unscrupulous. So much so, that I recently asked a psychiatrist if he could explain why it is that some people are more willing to believe really blatant lies rather than the honest truth.
Â“ItÂ’s very simple dear WatsonÂ” he replied. Â“A person telling the truth has no need to camouflage his manners, his tone of speech or his dress, it does not occur to him or her to do so. On the other hand, the deceiver is an expert at appearing believable and can become so good at it that he can be believed right away, no proof required; furthermore, he knows what and how the other person wants to see or hear and that is exactly what he offers, hence the word con- artist.Â”
Perhaps it becomes even easier to deceive on foreign soil when one of the most common denominators used by deceiver is language. The better and more refined is Â‘your ownÂ’ language used by the deceiver the more readily it is believed, especially when, in addition to spoken language, characteristic body language signals and expressions are used. This does not just apply to English; it is the same for any nationality and its language.
The reason for the deceit is always money; some deceive because they want lots of it and make it a habit to go to any unscrupulous lengths to get as much of it as they can, others deceive to get by or to get jobs that they are not really able or qualified to do.
Perhaps the tables are turning slightly on the Costa del Sol, where the economic crisis has substantially reduced the available opportunities to deceive, obliging many to return to their country in order to survive the crisis.
Although a large number of so called Â“foreignÂ” residents has gone back to the roots, I canÂ’t help observing an influx of new faces and an increased number of foreign plated cars of all nationalities, British in particular.
I am not sure what the reason might be, but it could be they have had enough of the Â“clownsÂ” that run their country; or perhaps they have had enough of the high level of crime that goes on, including the scandalous thefts by politicians; or perhaps it is the Â‘politicalÂ’ correctness and the Â‘big brotherÂ’ environment thatÂ’s encouraging the exodus. However, if I am right, this time the new arrivals would be settling here for the right reasons, with the correct expectations and not because of false promises of quick profits on the sale of properties purchased off plan.
Yes the Costa del Sol is a very nice place to live. The climate, the multinational environment and the Mediterranean are all very attractive, including the proximity to all European countries; I remember it being described as the beach of Europe, the place to spend your holidays.
But for those who do reside permanently on the Costa, unless they have the capital to do so, they must generate income through work and not expect to be paid to spend most of the time on the beach or bars.
Having spent so many years on the Costa, through two recessions, my advice to everyone needing an income is always the same. Remember that this is a foreign country, the official language is Spanish, the law and taxation systems are different so, before you embark on any business, get your facts straight and research the market. Most importantly, do not attempt a line of work you know nothing or little about because you can fool most of the people some of the time but never all of the time.
Making transparent claims to the effect that a website receives X% more visitors than the previous year does not say how many are the actual visitors; 2000% of zero is zero and 2000% of 1 is just 20. This type of claim made to obtain work is short lived and can give everyone else in the same line of business a bad name, as people tend to be swept with the same brush.
The early days of the Costa, when everything was novel, have gone; now the demand is for professional services and quality products, it is the way of the future. I am certain that we are now at the start of a slow but steady climb out of the recession, letÂ’s all play our part correctly and get there sooner.