Quick Guide to Seville

21 Sep

The following may be just assumptions since I have only been here for 2 weeks. I figured since I haven’t talked much about the customs here that I would throw down a list of quirks and noticeable traits about Seville that may not be the norm back in the states.

1. No one dries their clothes in a dryer. I’ve been to a few department stores lately, and most don’t even carry dryers. Because of this, you do laundry every week. Not because you can’t fit more clothes into the washer and do it, say, every 3 or 4 weeks, but because if you do a big load at once, your apartment will end up looking ludicrous as you back and forth between the abundance of air-drying clothes you’ve managed to fit into every nook and cranny of your place.

2. No one eats on Sundays, or rather, you eat very little. Everything shuts down as if the world around you was preparing for a natural disaster. As such, preparing or asking for a bocadillo, a sandwich (although that’s an overstatement; these are just bread and ham), the night before is customary and necessary if you want to eat at the end of every week.

3. People love Hollywood movies here. El Caballero Negro, La Linterna Verde, Thor (okay, that one wasn’t different in title, but still). The Spanish Government is currently on a heavy kick to promote more spanish films as a means of taking a chunk of the market.

4. You’re either for el equipo Betis or Sevilla F.C , both soccer teams from the region. Nothing else exists. Barcelona or Madrid teams may be acceptable only if playing during finals.

5. No one tips. If you tip, it is either because you do not want to carry the coin change, or because they did exceptionally well. There is no social stigma requiring you to tip; 3% will be considered crazy by any standards, let alone the customary 15% to 20% back home.

6. Few people have contract phones. Most are prepaid and goes on a need basis which is very low, as it is considered rude to prefer a phone conversation over meeting someone in person. Sevillanos are clever by establishing a social system called a “toque”. You email someone or make a meeting with someone and when you get there, you call the other party and hang up before they can answer. When they see a missed call, it can be assumed that the person is either waiting at the place or available to meet. As such, no one answers their phone on the first ring, just to see if it is a “toque” or not. Since no one answered the call, no minutes were used, and no money was wasted.

7. Much of the food here is tapas, small appetizer-like portions of food that are eaten throughout the day; this is since Sevillanos meet so often in person.

That’s it for now; additional items will become available as soon as I know they exist.

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