So, I suppose we can all say 'Feliz Navidad' en 'Prospero Año Nuevo' now.
Learning a new language is that step-by-step process: You pick up the vocabulary paso a paso. Or, more often than not, pasito a pasito: in little steps.
(Gamble with -ito or -ita at the end of a word and you are pretty sure it's the correct diminutive. And if it's not correct, we know how relaxed Andalusians are and always go for the good intention and never the correct packaging.
Some even experiment with adding more it's in the middle: pie, piecito, piecisito... or foot, small foot, tiny foot... we suggest not to become too experimental though and avoid introducing -tititititito, you risk being taken for Apache instead of Spanish).
Back to the topic: last Friday it was Reyes Magos. That stands for the magical Kings, or the Three Wise Kings from the East. It was one of the most important national fiestas of last week.
Vale, we are 'bromeando': kidding. The Andalusians are among the hardest working people in Europe: we are only being jealous that they've got life's recipe so right! They always know that it's not because it's winter that the sunny mood should stop.
Sociologists sometimes indicate that where frutas (fruits) drop from the cielo (sky, heaven), there's just less need for worries or the stress of planning: why be so anxious about tomorrow if the olives are instantly followed by the naranjas by the almonds by the avocados by the grapes, not to mention those annoying limones (lemons) that just keep dropping non-stop, without so much as you looking at the tree.
In inland Málaga the problem is never that you don't have a lemon for your salad, the problem is that you've got 40 kilos of them. And a neighbour barricading the door so you can't drop them with him. For he is struggling with his own lounge cum pecan nuts storage room.
Very, very hard work indeed (try being a builder or gardener in 40 degrees!): but less worries: tomorrow takes care of itself.
(We will skip the word for 'tomorrow' at the time being for that one is too difficult).
O Andalusian who is reading this, we are so sorry for such prejuicio! We are only teasing you, with lots of cariño (affection, love). We extranjeros might come here for the sun... we stay for the people. Sol y playa are wonderful for a holiday, Andalusians for a life.
We can struggle with the idioma, never get used to the horarios, always being three horas too early or too late, and never have the social customs precisely right. That we try so hard though and really really want to learn... is a great compliment and tribute to your culture. That also makes it so easy for us to make it ours.
Yes, yes, as many a Roman, Phoenician, Moor, Jew, Arab, Habsburger, Roma have been puzzled about: it's one of the great mysteries of life why someone would want to live anywhere else than here.
Language and culture: always intertwined. You learn one and the other starts to shimmer through. Many a multi-lingual person even says: it ads to your personality, as though you develop another trait in yourself.
Feliz Año Nuevo a todos in Guadalhorce Valley!
Grapevine Properties www.grapevine-properties.com