Spain’s Abuelitos

I love my abuelitos of Spain. How can you reliably identify them?

  1. They walk around with their hands clasped behind their back.
  2. They hang out in groups: on park benches, walking around town, in bars playing card games.
  3. They know how to rock a boina, otherwise known as a beret.
  4. They find guiris like me posing with weird statues very confusing.

12 Haciendo amigos(3)

Elderly Spanish men are the cutest, aren’t they?

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16 thoughts on “Spain’s Abuelitos

  1. I had a coffee in small Spanish town and there was a group of about 8 who just stared as my friend and I walked in. We then sat out side and they followed us out, just hanging around and looking at us. It was quite uncomfortable. I have no idea if we had broken some rule or something. The next day I was in town just passing by and they were there again just doing nothing standing there. I dodn’t like it. It was like the Stepford Wives but in a bad way!

    1. If it’s a small, small town (a pueblo), they likely NEVER (or okay, hardly ever) see foreigners. I can understand it making you feel uncomfortable. You should just say to them, “¿Qué pasa? ¿Tengo monos en la cara?” next time. :)

  2. Did you imagine your life would turn out like it did when you graduated college? What were your initial plans?

    1. Sorry, I totally forgot to respond to this! No, I had absolutely zero idea of what my life would turn out to be. I didn’t expect to meet my husband here. I did have plans to come back to Spain when I graduated, just so I could learn more Spanish—and, you know, experience life!

      My only initial plans were to come to Spain! After that I had no idea what I was going to do.

  3. I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with the abuelitos. Yes, they are cute, and I love how social they are: hanging out with their friends in the street, kissing random babies, having their morning caña. However, I have had several run ins with one abuelo who lives in my building, who has shouted at me, more than once, for not greeting him as I walked into the building, despite the fact that he was deep in conversation with another person at that time – “Didn’t your parents teach you any educación, that’s not how we do things in Spain etc”. Although my parents didn’t teach me the slightly tedious custom of having to greet every stranger who enters any room, lift or enclosed space with you, they did teach me not to interrupt!!

    1. Oh no, that abuelito is a bad, bad representation! Ugh. I am sorry, but I hate hate hate the greeting in the elevator. I do it anyway but I still hate it and find it weird. Sorry, I don’t want to be friends with the people in my building. I guess I am rude in their eyes!

      You should just give him a piece of your mind before you leave there (if you are leaving). I would plan it all out to leave him boquiabierto.

  4. My landlord is one of them abuelitos, and he and his family are sooo cute. Also, I call him “grandpa.” In addition, he’s a magician. Like, what.

    1. LOL, well, seguro que echa la partida los domingos, no? Sorry couldn’t figure out a way to say that in English. And he likes to drink caas with the friends por la tarde, no? Hahah. What else?

  5. I would add to your list (applicable to cities): They gather around construction sites and watch work and heavy machinery for hours and hours. Classic abuelito pastime in Spain. ;)

  6. I am cracking up at how you managed a picture with 3 abuelitos. I love seeing them around the country, too—especially in the morning at cafeterías when they come in for their coffee aka brandy.

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