Monthly Archives: November 2018

Black Friday makes it back to Spain. All week.

Last week as I was driving into work I heard a number of ads on the radio announcing big Black Friday sales. Sales lasting all week or the whole weekend. Since when did Friday turn into a full week? (last year I also touched upon this topic, although this year it’s been much bigger)

Since then it’s been nonstop emails, TV ads, radio ads, signs, all about Black Friday. Back in the US Black Friday has always been the crazy day — and I emphasize the word “day” – right after you’ve eaten too much turkey and spent too much time with the family to run off to the stores and fight with crowds of people to get special deals. For me I’d rather pay a few more dollars any day than fight with crowds on Black Friday. Now, however, this whole “Black Friday” concept doesn’t seem so horrible – a full week or longer, online sales…

I mean, I’m all for sales, but I do find it a bit funny. I’ve seen signs with Black Week, Black Weekend (slightly racist perhaps??), Crazy Friday … But where’s the turkey?? I’m almost afraid to say it, but I have a feeling Thanksgiving might start invading the land of cañas and tapas at some point in the near future as well.

Below is an image of the multitudes of turkeys at Costco the other day on sale since Thanksgiving has already passed. They were on sale with a 3€ discount — interestingly (or maybe on purpose) there was no sign that said the discount was for Black Friday … Poor turkeys 🙂


Halloween in Madrid – a little bit better every year

When I first was in Madrid 15 years ago Halloween was pretty much non-existent. And for those who did go out to celebrate, the costumes were just not right. There was this idea that Halloween costumes had to be scary, not like back in the US where they tend to be funny, sexy and scary. I think the most shocking moment for me was seeing a female’s costume related to an abortion – again, just not right.

Flash forward 15 years and I have to say I’m proud of how far we’ve come. Now, in general, I’m not a fan of all the US traditions and happenings making their way over to Spain (see: Fútbol y Fútbol OR Football, Basketball, Hockey and Baseball: A reflection on cultural imports) Spain is different; and I think it should stay that way. However, having said that, I don’t mind the adoption of some of the fun traditions, especially now that I have little kids.

Even in the last few years Halloween has really gained steam over here. A couple years ago I had a little shock when I brought my son in his costume to day care. It wasn’t because he was in a costume; all the other kids were dressed up as well as they said to dress them up for Halloween. The “issue” was that his cute little chicken costume was the only cute one; everyone else had their kids dressed up as witches or vampires, pretty much. And there was my little chicken…apparently this was more for Carnaval…


The “chicken incident”

This year, however, I am happy to say that the school costumes were a big mix with some cute and funny ones as well. We’re making progress. Also in our apartment complex this year there were trick-or-treaters all over the place.

I took my kids all over the complex for more than an hour visiting apartments. Now we just need to improve the candy offerings at the stores.

Next up: Turkey Day!