Sunday, April 15, 2007

Church, churros & chocolate

This morning I got up around 8:30, put on my snazziest threads, and headed over to the cathedral for Sunday morning mass. Not out of an enormously developed sense of devotion, I regret to say, but for two slightly less admirable reasons. First, in the spirit of sociological inquiry - I wanted to see what it would be like. Second, I wanted to see inside the cathedral, and this avoided the 6€ fee that is charged during the week.

The powers that be are obviously wise to this second reason, because in fact not all of the cathedral is open to worshippers on Sunday morning. Nonetheless, what I saw was interesting. As was the mass. Since I've been seeing one touching display of family togetherness after another since getting to Spain - in the streets, in the cafés, in the bars at night - three generations out together, often as not, I fully expected mass to be a multi-generational experience as well. Boy was I wrong. At fifty, I was one of the youngest congregation members in the church. Attending mass appears to be something that young (and middle-aged) Spaniards appear happy to leave to the older generation.

Or maybe I just picked too early a time. This thought occurred to me when I got back to Señora Rosa's shortly after 11am to find that nobody else in the house was up yet. I don't know whether to be impressed or shocked, because I have never considered myself a morning person.

One other disappointment at mass was the sermon. I was mentally settled in for a good 20-minute job, even had my little Moleskine (hi Dr Heidi P!) notebook to jot down good vocabulary words. What did we get? Two minutes, maximum.

To console myself on the way home I had to stop at a churrería, for some churros and chocolate. I took a picture, so that my blog-readers could share vicariously.

Churrería almost displaces murcielago as my favorite word of the moment. In part, because it's so much fun to watch my charming classmate Charlotte, from Lille, wrinkle her nose as she tries to pronounce it. But then I remember that murcielago is the only word in Spanish containing all five vowels (or so I´ve been told). Also deserving honorable mention this week, michelinitos, meaning love handles.

Plain people of Ireland: this Charlotte girl, does she have a sister?
The management: Silence, curs!

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