do as the spanish do? Well yes you have to in order to get along with them, same as anywhere in the world.
For me it took some getting used to in the beginning. Youre here in a new country... I was left here for a week
on my own when we first moved over here from the UK.... and at first Spain is different.
The following isnt me having a go at the spanish, its my admiration for them above all.
At first you are in a fresh place where youve only been on your holidays and now youre here to stay.
At the very start you seem to stick with your own people and just frequent english bars, restaurants and shops even tyring to make it home from home. You have the spanish with a different language that talk Oh so VERY fast and the two or three words you know arent really going to get you anywhere. In the small bar where my family started we got a lot of taxi drivers in and gardeners from the Hotel Pez Espada in Montemar, Torremolinos. You had two sides of the spanish, the taxi drivers who wanted to practice their spanish and the gardeners that went on and on making you learn as fast as you can. Personally i never attended a spanish class, it was me just picking up words and then stringing them together as neatly as i could to try and form sentences.
Later on i went on to work in Tivoli World on the laser games and there was a mix of spanish, english and other tourists and you had to kind of learn a script there to TRY and explain the game to the spanish even though my spanish was still pretty week a couple of years after moving here. I was amazed at how people has lived in Spain for over 30 years and these expats were still doing what i had done when i first moved here, they would stick with their own and a lot didnt know a lot of spanish at all - a big shame. I found that with everyday things that you had to do like shop and pay an electricity bill, you had to speak some spanish at least to get by.
After this job i started working in souvenir shops and i was on the benalmadena costa promenade where sundays was a lot of spanish coming into the shop in the summer for cold drinks and a lot were from the villages, with a broader accent who i understood less. This became a challenge really now, these people spoke even faster, cutting off the words and using phrases that were unknown to me and again going through another phase in expanding my spanish.
I have lived in Malaga city itself for over 15 years now and this was a completly new kind of living, living in a city. Old ladies in the supermarkets jumping queues and then saying that they hadnt even seen you and you had been there 20 minutes before them. Drivers giving a good use of their beeping, as soon red went to green on the traffic lights there hand must have been poised to beep you as soon as it had changed and you had to start becoming a psychic and trying to figure out where they would turn as lots didnt bother to indicate, with eyes at the back of my head, a bag of nerves.
Again i am not digging them, this was the way they lived and i was in no mind to try and change their way of thinking. Its no good even trying to be a good driver even; just the other day i was slowing down to let an old lady pass. She was with a younger man and i could see him staring at me weirdly, they took AGES to cross and i started waving a bit saying "Come on then i´m breaking and letting you cross." They eventually crossed so i began to speed up and the man starting waving at me saying "Hey why dont you slow down?" - I was the only one that had stopped, was fairly patient and he was having a RIGHT go at me. You just can´t win these days.
Blog by ALISTAIR WATTS - Owner of SpainLINKED