Remember when I told you about the time a pirate crashed my date? You might recall that we ended up in the ultimate Spanish bar. And when I say ultimate, I mean it doesn’t get much more Spanish than this. Even though my date didn’t go as planned that night, we discovered this hidden gem and decided to go back a few days ago.
El Cuento is a small space in the heart of Castellana, filled with locals. I like this place so much because it is extremely authentic. Everyone who comes here (except me) is a true Madrileño. Being blonde, blue-eyed and currently having a pasty white, almost sickly complexion, I was asked multiple time whether I’m lost. As if my presence could not possibly intentional, I was given a lot of suspicious and curious looks that night. Spaniards are very bad at hiding their curiosity and really don’t mind their own business. (You will become vividly aware of this when you travel on the metro)
The great thing about El Cuento is the selection of Spanish pop music. It’s dramatic, it’s corny and most of all EVERYONE will scream the lyrics at the top of their voices. To you this might sound like some kind of horror story, but believe me when I say it’s highly entertaining.
Why are Spanish people so melodramatic? Either they are ready to take a bullet for you and follow you to the ends of the world, or they hate you so much that they might fire that bullet themselves and then push you off the end of the world. In this case they will probably tell you “cago en la leche de tu puta madre” which translates to I shit in your whore mother’s milk. The first time I heard this I laughed hard, which I don’t recommend doing… seriously don’t. Spaniards are passionate about everything they do and there is no middle ground. It keeps you on your toes.
So as I was happily tipsy at El Cuento, I found myself stuck in the middle of two very handsome Spaniards, who were deeply involved in some sort of sing-off. The song was a Spanish ballad about the pain of love. It was extremely heartfelt and intense, and the two men on either side of me were fiery and enthusiastic, feeling the immense pain described in the song. I cried a little.
The night went on and my friend and I, desperate to be part of the cool kids, started to invent the lyrics to the songs, thus joining the screaming. However, tortilla, siesta and hola were the only fitting lyrics we could think of. So, as we discriminated against the entire bar, we had the time of our lives feeling the all the deep emotions like true Spaniards.