Saturday, September 25, 2010

As the concept of time is not the same here in Spain as it is elsewhere, my basic advice to everyone coming here is Carry something to read while you’re waiting. But there’s another aspect to living here which is related but which can’t be dealt with by carrying reading matter. This is the regular need to repeat things you were expecting to achieve the first time round. Like taking my jackets to the shopping mall the day before yesterday and finding it closed. And then going to the plumber’s place yesterday evening to find that shut as well. Ditto with the computer repair shop this morning. In this last case, a note on the door said they’d be open this evening. So I resolved to come back to the city tonight and, at the same time, do the other shopping I’d planned – a gift for someone’s birthday tomorrow. Which I duly did. And had a successful ten minutes at the computer shop, only to then find the five leather goods shops I tried were all closed. Only clothes shops, cake shops and sweet shops are open on a Saturday evenings here in Pontevedra, it seems. From which you can tell I’ve never previously tried shopping at this time in ten years here.

But there was one interesting development arising from all this wasting of time. I discovered the brothel next to the plumber’s shop down on Poio’s main street is now called Plan B and that it offers a Relax Lounge. Quite why Plan B, I can’t begin to guess. But it’s surely better, as a name, than Working Girls, further up the road.

Putting my jackets in to be dry-cleaned, I was momentarily stumped when the girl asked me for my apesheedo. But then I realised it was a version of the word for address, apellido, normally pronounced these days apeyeedo. Thank God for my Argentinean piano teacher, for this is where she hailed from.

But, anyway, all’s now well with the world as the little six year old playing with cards and building bricks at the next table in this wi-fi café has been engaging me in conversation during the last half hour. Fortunately, she speaks standard Spanish. Albeit through teeth that are unhelpfully bucked . . . .

Finally . . .  I’ve received a new version of my credit card, complete with a chip. However, my bank goes to great length to assure me nothing’s changed and that I’ll still have to show my ID and sign the voucher, as before. Why? one wonders. Just as I did when, checking on the procedure for a reader, I found that when you send a letter to El País you have to supply not just your address but also your ID or passport number. As I regularly say, I guess it makes sense to someone. If not me. “Because it’s there”,  I guess.

4 comments:

Diego said...

Probably the brothel´s owner has been keeping up on the Chilean miners´ ordeal every news piece about them mentions plans A, B and C to get them out of there. If you use a card with a PIN number you don´t have to sign, otherwise you´re out of luck. I guess the opening hours depend a lot on where in town the store is located, on Saturday afternoon only shops on streets with a lot of foot traffic or the pijo area are open, at least here in Oviedo, or they might be using the summer hours where most shops close on Saturdays.

Colin said...

There are only pijo areas in Pontevedra . . .

Sierra said...

The recession seems to have influenced opening hours - a year or so back car dealers were strictly 5-day opening; now the remaining ones are advertising opening Saturday mornings and afternoons.

Colin said...

Yes, I thought I'd noticed this. In the UK, of course, Saturdays and Sundays have long been the days to go to the car salesrooms.

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