Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Yo no hablo espanol

In the old days, when I was still a teenager, I took Spanish classes for a while. Not that I remember much of it, but I do remember I liked the sound of the language. "Donde esta el mercado" is one of the lines I recall. Of course there are some words we all know. Think of "cerveza" or "agua". But I don't drink beer so there's not much use in knowing that word, is there?

Madrid was wonderful. People were right when they warned us that most Spanish people don't speak other languages. It's damn hard to make yourself understood if you don't speak Spanish. You can try to explain in English or French but that doesn't help one bit. Saying: Hablo un poquito de espanol, does not encourage the other to speak slower or use simple sentences. I hate it when I can't express myself in the language of the country we're visiting. But hey! We survived, didn't we? I got myself a pair of new boots and we managed to get food in our bodies, so our Spanish isn't that bad after all.

For three days, we had the chance to discover this vibrant city. Full of tourists, it's hard to find the locals. But they are there! They just don't look like the stereotype Spanish person I had in mind. How could I be so stupid to think that all Spanish people are short, have black hair and dark eyes? Because they don't. I saw tall blonde girls, that didn't look Spanish at all, but by the sound of their fluently spoken Spanish, they must have been natives.

I'm no fan of the Spanish cuisine though. Can't understand why so many are fond of tapas. They don't look appealing to me at all. We were happy to have found a fine Italian ristorante, behind the wonderful Opera building. I will try to make my own Spanish tortilla though..

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