Skip to main content


Showing posts from June, 2013

Casting off

School term is over in Spain. It's summer. Nearly everyone from Cartagena is at the beach. The town is quiet and we are done, at least till the new academic year when I'll be back to do a bit more English teaching.

We've cleared everything from the flat. We've carted our belongings up the road to Culebrón. We've handed over the keys of the flat. So goodbye to town life for a while and goodbye to Cartagena till I get back there in hot and sticky September.

In the meanwhile you can follow our adventures (sic) at Life in Culebrón

Looking foreign

I was in the vet a few weeks ago. There were a couple of Spanish women in front of me talking about their English neighbours. They seemed to think that the couple were nice enough but they soon got on to complaining about how they didn't try to speak Spanish. The veterinary nurse agreed that none of them/us tried to speak Spanish.

Everyone agrees that I don't look Spanish. It's not the hair, or the height or the clothes or the skin colour. I don't wear Union Flag underpants and, if I wear sandals, I go sockless. But everyone agrees I look like a Briton.

There are often boatloads of tourists in Cartagena. Literally boatloads. They come in big boats early in the mornings and they are usually gone by mid afternoon. Today it's the Royal Caribbean Independence of the Seas with a potential roster of 4,370 passengers. On Friday there will be the Windsurf and the Thomson Dream. The cruise ships usually moor in the port, basically in the heart of the town. Passengers step …

You must be pulling my leg

So, I'm in the waiting room in the health centre at eight in the morning. The process for taking blood is quick, a production line. There are maybe thirty of us in the room. I'm sitting there with my left leg crossed over my right. I shuffle, right over left. I'm reading.

As the electronic scoreboard closes in on my number I lose interest in the book and my gaze wanders around the room. I am the only person with my legs crossed. Everyone else, young and old, male and female has their legs akimbo - both feet firmly planted on the floor.

I mentioned this to Carlos. I asked other Spaniards. Amazingly they confirmed, with plenty of exceptions and extra detail, that crossing ones legs is not very Spanish.

I still don't really think it's true. Interesting if it were though.