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Tuesday, 13 March 2012


I have noticed that a certain type of Brit feels guilty if they feel they are enjoying themselves. Eating a nice meal or drinking expensive wine often has to be justified. There also seems to be two types after the age of fifty, the drinkers and the non drinkers. The non drinkers are often people who have had to attend AA because they have had a problem with alcohol and the rest seem to have mellowed when it comes to their drinking and drug taking and are now capable of having their wine and drinking it. I guess it doesn't matter so long as you know what you are doing.

Guilt is a funny thing and here in Spain it doesn't have anything to do with enjoying yourself with food and wine. Guilt is something dragged out when someone has done something you feel is an injustice and they look back at you and say 'y tu?' which roughly translates as 'and you? who are you? You are not perfect'. I suppose it is better to be accused of being another law breaking individual. In Britain if you knocked on someone's door and asked them if they would mind not playing the same song by Whitney Houston a hundred times a day or if they would mind not parking on your lawn with the engine running you would probably get stabbed, so here 'y tu?' is something you just have to put up with. When Spanish folk try to do the 'y tu?' number on me I often feel like telling them to forget it as I am Jewish and I don't do guilt but I know this will be met by a perplexed look and then a seething, confused anti-Semitism. Likewise, if a Brit tries it on when I have had too many Riojas I like to tell them I am a Catholic or better, that I am Spanish and I couldn't give a toss.

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