Making friends (and trying not to alienate myself) in a new city

I'm conscious that since I moved to Barcelona, my social life has close to disappeared... I have a couple best friends here which is a luxury for anyone who moves to a new city and that's a start, no? Having said that, I know I need to get out there and make new friends, but...

There are a few roadblocks to my finding these 'new friends': 1. at 35, I have a lot of great people I love and consider part of my friends' family, so the friend quota is more or less full but since only a couple live in Barcelona, I need to get out there and give the newbies a chance; 2. I work from home and mainly on the phone with folks in US/UK so I cannot rely on my work for friend finding which I always have in the past; 3. since moving here, I haven't found myself in a very sociable mood, I've been in a bit of shock resulting from the unwanted life change and as a result, I've grown accustomed to spending a lot of time alone which is not a good long term situation for this single chica; 4. over the years, I have found that I have a hard time making meaningful relationships in a non-international groups and nowadays, I even feel self-conscious about it to an extent, I find myself assuming that my interlocutors must find me unrelatable - I have no doubt that it makes sense as I get older that my circle stretches thinner than wider so I know I have to not make this an issue and accept it as is; 5. my social elevator pitch sucks - it needs work! ;0)

So, I have thought of a few things I can do to meet like minded people -

  • reach out to my friends around the world to see if they have buddies here in BCN - what's the point of having an international network if you don't use it?!
  • take Italian classes: I had my first class today, am not sure I'll be making besties but I am enjoying the social aspect of the class dynamic
  • join a book club: I joined a French book club, reading our 1st assigned book as we speak
  • join social & business networking clubs: I joined an expat club called InterNations (their slogan, "connecting global minds in 390 cities around the world") and will be signing up to this business association called Barcelona Global (their mission is to "actively contribute to making Barcelona one of the most attractive cities in the world to attract and develop talent and economic activity")
  • take on a physical activity: watch this space...

Have you found it hard to make new friends when moving to a new city/country? What have you done to grow your social life? Tips & encouragement please!