American in Spain

No Me Duermo - I'm Not Falling Asleep

September 15, 2011

No me duermo (thumbnail)Today is a local holiday honoring the Virgin of the Good Apparition, a bit of pareidolia that occurred back in 1605 where some light reflecting off a nearby hermitage window reminded someone of the Virgin Mary. Three hundred years later, this particular virgin became the patron saint of the Santander Diocese, and it became a regional holiday. Quite a few people walk the 13 kilometers, mostly uphill, from Colindres to the Bien Aparecida church in Ampuero, and then there are picnics and music and a general festive atmosphere up there...or so I'm told. We'll have to do the walk one year. To change topics completely, there's no daycare today, and Nora got up very early, so we really wanted her to take a nap, but we've had no luck. Right after lunch, Nora and her mother were arguing about taking a nap, and it was too cute, so I grabbed the video camera, and this is what I captured.

It's mostly in Spanish, so I've subtitled it (click the "CC" button).

As you can see, she's in the stage of parroting everything back to practice her pronunciation. Personally, I'm completely fascinated by her ability to correctly conjugate complex forms of Spanish verbs. Earlier, we were out at a cafe, and I gave her a five euro note and told her to give it to the waitress. She replied, "Cuando viene, yo se lo doy." (When she comes, I'll give it to her.) That's some complex direct object and indirect object pronoun grammar that I didn't finally grasp until well into my Spanish studies.

The other day, when she was talking to her Spanish grandfather on the phone, she sat down in a chair, put her hand on her forehead and said, accompanied by perfectly exasperated body language, "Joder, Abuelo..." (Fuck, Grandpa...). Part of me was impressed and delighted that she'd nailed the performance and intonation so well. Of course she gets absolutely no reinforcement from us when she uses inappropriate words. A more common bowdlerized version is "¡Jolí­n!", which she uses in the video, and I've translated to "Jeez!" in the subtitles. That's a perfectly acceptable exclamation in Spanish culture between children and adults.