Tuesday, June 23, 2009

one thing i hate in spain by k

there are lots of little things that drive me crazy here...like anywhere. but there is one thing i hate...truly hate here! the love of firecrackers, and more than the love of them, the total acceptance that it is okay to light them day and night, anywhere and everywhere. i really and truly do not get it. throwing eggs or smashing a watermelon...that i can grasp on some level. but making a super loud noise and potentially blowing up your hand????

tonight is sant joan or san juan. i've asked several people what the day celebrates and they say the shortest night of the year. that doesn't exactly make sense to me because the 21st was the summer solstice...the longest day of the year, which i assume translates into the shortest night of the year. hummm.

anyway, sant joan is apparently all about setting off firecrackers and lighting bonfires and watching fireworks. there are stands selling firecrackers and fireworks set up all over the city in the most random places. people have been warming up for at least two weeks...there are random bangs day and night. dorian and i were walking home from the metro yesterday (victims of another unannounced bus strike!) and saw a group of teenage boys loitering around a bag of garbage. it took me a minute but then i realized they were looking for stuff to blow up! they had the courtesy to wait until we walked past, but then bam! dorian cried. i'm not looking forward to tonight!

i've been told that spanish parents dress their kids in long-sleeved shirts, long pants, gloves and put bandannas over their noses and mouths so they don't get burned or breathe in too much smoke. and this is supposed to be fun???

i can relax into the 3-hour lunch, i can roll with the bus strike (barely), i can take the fact that everything closes on sundays, but i just can't understand the firecrackers!

wish us luck tonight.