In Spanish the expression “Todo el Mundo” (literally, “The Whole World”) is what people here say when they mean “everyone”. A bit exaggerated? I think not.
You decide to spend the day at the beach. Not only is the Whole World on the highway heading there, but once you get there, the Whole World is already at the beach.
You decide to go shopping at the Corte Ingles. The Whole World is there. Get me out of here, you think. But you stay until around 2:00 and then the Whole World leaves to go home for lunch. The place empties out because the Whole World eats lunch at the same time.
You want to go to the Arabic Bathhouse on a Saturday? No, no spots left. The Whole World has been booked for two weeks already.
You want to go for a bike ride instead, taking advantage of that new public bike system you signed up for? No, no bikes left, anywhere in this city. The Whole World is going for a bike ride, apparently.
What is it with this place? It seems like whenever something new happens, it just gets overcrowded with people. I just do not buy claims that the birthrate here is dangerously low, requiring government incentives for having kids (apparently the Whole World decided to just have one kid, which isn’t enough to support the Whole World on social security). All I hear about are horror stories about there not being enough spots in the public or private schools, and two year waiting lists for child-care, and the like. Not to mention the crowded playgrounds with kids literally lined up by the dozens for their lone chance to go down the slide.
Do any other Americans living in Spain get the feeling that this place is freaking crowded in every aspect???????????
I guess it could be worse.
Crowded Bus from Flickr by Poggis