There should have been another street party before this post, but a downpour at around 9.30pm on Monday night had us stocking up the fire instead of slapping on the make-up and street party – the sequel was rescheduled.

My first attempt to photograph the carnaval queens in Puerto de la Cruz hadn’t exactly been successful. Luckily there was one more chance to meet the queens in the lovely little Plaza Iglesia last night before their appearance at the closing parade on Saturday.

Despite a weather pattern which has seen sunny days and occasional party dampening rain in the evening, the weather behaved itself for the carnaval queens and dames and I was able to get  close for some decent shots. It wasn’t totally successful as the inhabitant of the best costume was mysteriously missing. Her African themed costume was there, but not her. However, the lovely Esther Yanes García, Puerto’s carnaval queen, was present and I was finally able to get some decent shots of a queen who, for me, outshines that of Santa Cruz.

Whilst I was snapping away I was brusquely nudged once, and then again as someone tried to bump me out of the way. I turned to see a severe looking couple staring at me. It came as no real surprise when I heard what language they spoke.

Whereas the Spanish women in the crowd beside me laughed and chatted with the queens and thanked me when I knelt down to let them take photos over my head (they didn’t realise I was just trying a different angle), these two glared at me with expressions that could have curdled milk.

I try very hard not to stereotype, but sometimes it can be difficult…so I’ve got to say it. What is it about the Germans that makes some of them appear so rude? No let me rephrase that. The younger Germans are fine. It’s Germans of a certain age that seem to lack social etiquette. I’ve been bumped out of the way in shops and been the victim of attempted queue jumps at the post office and in the supermarket more times than I can mention and it’s nearly always Germans in their late 60s and above who are the culprits.

I’ve posed the question to German friends about why their compatriots behave in such a manner and their answers have been varied. Friends in La Gomera claim it’s because we get a different sort of German on Tenerife than they do – ours are common and uneducated. But then they say that about the Brits on Tenerife as well. However, a German friend from Santa Ursula agrees.

My favourite explanation is from Schwäbisch friends who simply put it down to the stern, rude Germans being from the north of the country whereas the southern Schwäbisch like them are more amenable, fun loving and artistic and would never behave in such a disagreeable manner.

Anyway the woman bumped again. Instead of doing what I instinctively wanted to do by coming over all Basil Fawlty/David Brent with a ‘it’s that sort of behaviour that got you into trouble in 1939’ reply, I simply smiled at the couple and turned back to the more appealing visions in front of my camera.

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Comments
  1. ZephyrLiving says:

    Wow. Do they have to get second mortgages to make their costumes? I can’t fathom how those are made…

    I was hoping you might have decked the Germans, but…seeing as you didn’t, perhaps the next people they elbowed did. I don’t know why the thought of that pleases me so much. Ha haha.

    But you’re right. It would be a waste of time and good fortune to turn away from those beauties.

    Peace, T.

    • dragojac says:

      They spend months making them…some are works of art rather than costumes. The potential queens get sponsored by local businesses and just about every decent sized town here elects their own carnaval queen. I´d love to see them all together in the one place like a weird and very colourful, carnaval army.

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