O and I decided to meet at Plaza las Américas on Wednesday to go to the cinema. I took the bus from Condado, only the 3rd time taking the bus in Puerto Rico and I learnt something new – people greet each other at the bus stop! Buenas tardes (Good Afternoon) was said to everyone who came to wait at the stop… It took a while for the bus to arrive but fortunately I have learnt from past bus waiting experiences in Brussels to bring a book and especially as the bus trip takes approx. 45 minutes – in the end it took me almost 1,5 hours to get to the mall! Oh well, if you don’t have a car, what can you do?
I strolled around in the mall, bought some more ornaments for our xmas tree in Sears (the 40% reduction on all Christmas things was irresistible) and then headed for Borders to browse the book shelves – O called me and said that he had arrived, was I on the 1st or 2nd floor? I was on the 1st floor and we decided to meet by the entrance… He never showed up so I started to get really annoyed, called him back and asked where he was – on the 2nd floor! Why? He couldn’t find me on the 1st floor – arrgghh… we finally found each other and it turned out that he had tried to find me outside the entrance, but I was inside (of course)… These little misunderstandings in every day life that cause such annoyance – is it because we are from Venus and men are from Mars? 😉
Time to chose the film… I wanted O to decide, and he said that he was interested in watching Love in the time of cholera, which I also wanted to watch but I was convinced that it would be in Spanish with no subtitles (films are obviously subtitled in Spanish here if the dialogue is in English)… O asked and it turned out that no, the film was in English with Spanish subtitles! Strange, almost all the actors were Spanish-speaking…
That was good news for me, so we decided to buy the tickets for the film, and another surprise – I saw O pay with a ten-dollar-note and some coins – but the ticket price was displayed as $ 6.50. Hm, I was confused until O showed me that on one of the tickets it was marked dama and the marked price was $ 4. However, he couldn’t explain why it was cheaper for me than for him (on his ticket is said adulto and $ 6.50) so we asked the ticket controllers and they explained that it is ladies’ night on Wednesdays, just like it is students’ night and senior citizens’ night some other days of the week. O asked when is it men’s night… the men laughed and said never.
I thought that I was well prepared for an evening at the mall, I was wearing my jeans, a blouse, a cardigan and had an extra shawl in the bag – ha! When will I learn that for some reason the Puertoricans want their public indoor areas to have polar temperatures?? After a few minutes in the cinema I was freezing cold despite all my layers and the shawl – in a cinema (or restaurant etc) in Europe you wouldn’t wear more than what I was wearing, even in the middle of winter… After 1,5 hours I was literally shivering and O had to hug me really close, which didn’t do much help as he was also cold (but it was cosy)!
So, how was the film then? Sooo disappointing! First of all, the film is based on a classic novel by Gabriel García Márquez and is set in his native Colombia… However, the film is in English, played by Latinamerican, Spanish (Javier Bardem) and even an Italian actress (plus Benjamin Bratt, an ex-boyfriend of Julia Roberts – American but with Latinamerican origins). It is absurd to watch these actors speak English with their Spanish accents, especially as the extras speak SPANISH in the background!! We didn’t like it at all, it felt like the whole film had been ruined by the choice of language (despite that if it had been in Spanish, I would have to watch it on dvd with subtitles), and I thought that the focus on many, many bare chests of the women was quite disturbing and in your face – it didn’t add anything to the film… I don’t recommend this film, I am sure that the book is much better and I am planning to read it soon (I have had the book for 10 years now but never had the right mood for it).
Frozen stiff, I was so happy when we got out of the building and into the humid heat of the Caribbean night – wow, next time I go to the cinema I will bring a woolen jumper (or a blanket, which is what Swedish B recommended!)..