Siempre aprendiendo y probando

28 Oct

Last evening I went to a quedada, a get-together, with a couple people I knew and met some other fantastic people. There were twelve of us total. The wine was great, the food was good and the company best of all. But, as I continue to discover, I am learning something new every day besides words to add to my castellano vocabulary. Perhaps I am giving away my uncultured background here, but eso es; I hereby divulge my ignorance. Then again, if no one tells me, how do learn? I have one advantage to being here in Spain: they believe it is just different in the States! And in many ways, yes it is. But I was just doing some research and discovered that I have been doing it wrong all these years.

The correct way to hold a glass of red wineLesson Number One: Drinking wine. Hold the copa by the stem, not the bottom of the goblet, so as not to warm the wine with the temperature of the hand. Well, I knew that for champagne and white wine, but for red wine does it make a difference? I mean, red wine is already room temperature. But apparently it does, so I now will hold my wine glass by the stem. (In my defense, one of the glasses of red wine was served chilled and I wanted to warm it up!)

 

 

 

 

 

Lesson Number Two: Finishing a meal. Place your fork and knife together across the plate, with the handles at five o´clock and the tines and blade at ten o´clock. This demonstrates that you are done with your meal and that you are pleased with it. I knew all about placing the silverware on the plate, but had been crossing my fork and knife on the plate. Apparently that is an insult, indicating that you are displeased or dissatisfied with the meal. Before the server took my plate, my companion beside was sure to explain this to me, so I quickly corrected myself so as not to offend anyone.

 

 

Disfrutando un café con lecheFirst new experience: Café con leche (and a lot of azúcar). My friends and family know that I do not drink coffee. My feeling is that if you have to learn how to drink it, it is not worth drinking, so I never learned how to drink coffee. But here I was, at the quedada, and everyone was having coffee after the meal. And here in Spain, they serve the very fuerte coffee in the cutest little tazas! I just had to try some. My first taste of café con leche (coffee with creme) was like drinking dirt…seriously people, how do you do it? So I added a packet of sugar. Yes, a little better. The gal across the table offered her half packet of sugar and, Voila! perfect cup of coffee. So now I can add that to my list of new adventures. Who would have thought I would have to travel across the Atlantic to try coffee?!

 

Second new experience: Karaoke, Spanish style. When the ¨gang¨ suggested we go to a Karaoke bar, I quickly agreed. What better way to experience some Spanish culture than to watch and listen to people singing their hearts out. Of course, I thought I would get a good laugh, too, as many people singing Karaoke usually aren´t the best singers in the world, myself included. I also wanted to see if there were any differences between the US and Spanish versions. It´s official folks; Karaoke is Karaoke, no matter where you are. Some great singers, some mediocre singers, and some who can´t carry a tune in a bucket if their life depended on it, yet continue to sing song after song, much to the dismay of all the other patrons.

Overall, last night was a great learning experience and an absolute joy to meet more new people here in Bilbao. If I didn´t have so much to learn, life would be dull and lifeless, which is perhaps why I am loving this place so much.

 

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2 Responses to “Siempre aprendiendo y probando”

  1. withitalianlove 03/11/2012 at 08:48 #

    I’ve just clicked through practically your whole site, looking at everything that spiked my interest and am quite glad I stumbled across your blog! I’m soon to be going to live in Italy, with my boyfriend from Florence who is here in Adelaide with me at the moment.

    I had no idea about the holding a wine glass from its stem thing until my boyfriend corrected me either… I was adamant he was delirious until he made me look it up on google!

    It has been great to read your experiences, for me to think about what I’ll be doing in the future (even if I am in entirely different circumstances, a completely different country!). Looking forward to the future as your newest follower!

    • kschario 11/11/2012 at 13:55 #

      I am glad I am not the only one who was “ignorant” of this custom! I was completely surprised when I googled it myself. Good luck when living in Italy!

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