A bit of the Spanish culture
Spanish culture is an European culture based on a variety of influences. These include the pre-Roman cultures, mainly the celts and the Iberians, known as the Celtiberian cultures; but mainly in the period of Roman influences.
Some examples of the Spanish culture include:
The party is celebrated on the last Sunday of August in the Valencian town of Buñol. The celebration starts with the first event at about 10.00. It all started in 1944 and after several bans La Tomatina was finally made official in 1959.
While the crowd sings and dances, volunteers try to release a leg of ham that is hanging from a greased pole by climbing to the top. Once someone manages to release the ham, the party starts, normally around 11.00.
Once the starting signal is given, many lorries download thousands of tomatoes into the town’s main square. It is recommended that participants use goggles and gloves. In order to avoid major injuries, the tomatoes need to be squashed before being launched. The tomato battle finishes one hour later with the sound of a second signal.
The square as you might imagine ends up covered in red and then the city authorities start with their job, cleaning the town… once the town is cleaned, thanks to the acidity of the tomatoes the cobbled streets become completely immaculate.
San Fermin - Pamplona (from the 6th until the 14th July)
It all starts by setting off the chupinazo (fireworks). At 12.00 noon on the 6th July a rocket is launched from the balcony of the city hall marking the start of the fiesta. At 8.00am on the 7th July, hundreds of people run in front of six bulls and six steers down the streets of Pamplona for about half a mile. The run finishes when the bulls arrive at the bullring. The whole circuit takes about 3 minutes in total.
The San Fermin party lasts for nine consecutive days and finishes at midnight on the 14th July at the Plaza Consistorial. The people gather there and sing the traditional mournful Pobre de Mi in the candlelight.
In Spain, food is a way of life. Friendships are formed, families unite, and the working week can be set around every day's very important meals. The country's distinctive cuisine brings together unique regional dishes, special ingredients and long standing influences from Moorish and Arab settlers. Spanish cuisine consists of a variety of dishes which stem from differences in geography, culture and climate. It is heavily influenced by seafood available from the waters that surround the country, and reflects the country's deep maritime roots.
Some famous dishes include:
- Calamares a la romana
- Tortas de Aceite
Doing business in Spain
The Spanish prefer to do business with those they know and trust. So learning Spanish is imperative in order to properly communicate and do business in Spain and establish good working relationships.
- It is important that you spend sufficient time letting your business colleagues get to know you.
- Once you develop a relationship, it will prevail even if you switch companies, since your Spanish business colleagues' allegiance will be to you rather than the company you represent.
- It is best to display modesty when describing your achievements and accomplishments.
- Communication is formal and follows rules of protocol.
- Avoid confrontation if at all possible. Spaniards do not like to publicly admit that they are incorrect.
- Trust and personal relationships are the cornerstones of business.
- Hierarchy and rank are important. You should deal with people of similar rank to your own.
. Decision-making is held at the top of the company, since this is a hierarchical country. You may never actually meet the person who ultimately makes the decision.
- You may be interrupted while you are speaking. This is not an insult, it merely means the person is interested in what you are saying.
- First you must reach an oral understanding. A formal contract will be drawn up at a later date.
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