Friday, October 20, 2006

Changes

This is Spaaainn
I went to Spain last week. Just for a couple of hours. It was no big deal. I figured since I was so close to the border, I should pop over there. There is actually a river separating the two countries on that particular part of the border, but if it wasn't for this you wouldn't even notice you were getting into a different nation: there are people speaking spanish in this side of the border and when you go to Spain you hear people speaking portuguese. It's very simple: in Spain the gasoline is much cheaper (other goods like groceries and cigarettes have lower prices too); in Portugal the manufactured goods are cheaper (like clothes and linen) so the Spanish come to buy them here and there is a constant interchange of people.
I'm not even getting into the differences between the two countries, especially when it comes to people's incomes and the growth of the economies (a very sad topic for me) but...oh it's all changed so much!
When I was a littlegirl, going to Spain was an event. You'd get all excited, get your ID's, recover the locked away pesetas, change your clocks into the central european time and go! There you'd buy everything you could afford - you were away, in a foreign country - you could be extravagant! Over there you could find things that were different from the things you found in Portugal so it was exciting. I'd ALWAYS get gummy bears; not that there weren't gummy bears in Portugal, just because it was a tradition.
Today it's all changed: you go there, you don't have to exchange your money because of the Euro, there's no one in the border to greet you or ask for your ID, in fact...there is no border! And we don't even bother to adjust our clocks to a later hour...When you get to the shops there's nothing special to buy because most spanish shops are all over Portugal as well...so it's just like any other shopping trip. (Obviously it's quite lucrative to get your gas tanks full) It makes you think, doesn't it? Well, it makes me think! lol
I still enjoy going though...more for the sights, for the people, for the fun of the journey...

p.s. - I really hope this doesn't delete itself - it's the 3rd time today I've lost things that I've written. I won't put up with this anymore!

9 comments:

Meow said...

It must be great to live surrounded by other countries, where you can just go for a drive and be in another one !! Unfortunately, we don't have that luxury here ... being surrounded by water, and all !!! I think it would be wonderful.
Thanks for sharing.
Have a wonderful weekend.
Take care, Meow

Devil Mood said...

Meow: It would be even better if I lived in Luxembourg or something; I only have Spain to go to. On the other hand, even if it's all Australia around you it has very different regions so it compensates for the lack of other countries :) Plus, you never had wars because of border issues ;)

sophie said...

I may be in Spain next June and
if so I will buy you some
gummy bears:)

Anonymous said...

What a great photo!

DayByDay4-2Day said...

Thanks for sharing that. It was very interesting.

fb said...

It must be fun to say...

'Hey i'm just going to Spain'

You have a misfiring football team too!

Devil Mood said...

Sophie: Good but being in Spain and not visiting Portugal is just...dumb :/ ;)

Kimananda: Thanks, the sun helped!

Day: Thanks, I'm glad you thought so.

FB: Yes, it's funny. What do you mean misfiring? We're on top of the league...yes, we could be playing better but hopefully we will soon...

fb said...

Oh then porto aren't misfiring!

Liverpool haven't won away from home this season, are 11pts behind the leaders.

They've taken 1pt from a possible 15pts for away games and effectively been written off from mounting a title challenge this sesaon.

Devil Mood said...

FB: Yes, I saw the match yesterday. I don't get it because they don't seem to have the same problems in the Champions League, right? :/ It's hard to compete with all those superstar teams but...I could say the same things about Liverpool. Hmmm...