Although we've been living in Spain for over five years now, I've never taken a siesta. Unless you count dozing off on the bus back to Jumilla, after having had a good lunch in Murcia with several glasses of wine?
Since moving here we have adopted several local customs. We go out for desayuno (breakfast) with a Spanish friend several times a week, having a cup of coffee and some toast at 11.30. This is actually my second breakfast, as I start the day with a very English cup of tea and bowl of breakfast cereal. I like to have the best of both worlds!
Lunch is usually taken between 2 and 2.30, whether we have gone out for a menú del día or we are eating at home. Whereas the Spanish tradition is to then have a siesta after lunch, we usually take our dog out for a walk during the cooler months. However, when it's very hot outside in summer, we are sensible and stay indoors during the heat of the afternoon, but we still don't take a siesta. John usually watches sport on TV or reads a book, while I may read a book, browse my favourite blogs or write my own blog. We also enjoy going to our nearby supermarket during summer afternoons and making the most of its air conditioning and also the comparative peace.
Dinner at home may be any time between nine and ten, depending on whose turn it is to cook and what we've been doing that day. When we go out for tapas or a meal with Spanish friends, we usually arrange to meet them at 9.30 pm, but they rarely turn up before 10.00. I'm not sure whether they take a siesta, but they always seem to be a lot livelier in the evening than we are, so I suspect that they do.
So far, so good. We are definitely adjusting to life in a foreign country. However I have been looking at the programme of events for the forthcoming Feria y Fiestas de Agosto, between 9 and 18 August. Ten days of celebrations, with folk music, processions, a festival of bands, Moors and Christians re-enactments, flamenco music and dancing, jazz and lots more: August is definitely going to be party time. There is just one slight problem - most of these events don't start until 10 pm or even later, and that is assuming that they actually start on time. Have we got the stamina to cope with so many late nights?
This may be a good opportunity to start copying what our Spanish neighbours do and have a siesta - what do you think?