Edit Blog Post
Published: August 8th 2007
The rain in Spain...Trapped in La Quinta
doesn't just fall in the plain...
We try to enjoy some sun this morning, but it gets cool quite quickly and we retreat back to our hotel room where it’s warmer. The Costa del Sol has some amazing beach weather most of the time, but both times I’ve been in Marbella (this time and 10 years ago), it has been cloudy and rainy. No worries, though, because our room is a refuge that I don’t mind spending the whole day in. This will be a luxury pretty soon.
Our plan today is to take a cab to Puerto Banús, which is closer than Marbella center, and check out the beach, have lunch, and buy groceries so that we can avoid spending more on food and drinks at the hotel. I refuse to pay for overpriced bottles of water, so we’ve been drinking tap (which is fine in Spain, from personal experience). But the over-chlorinated tap water is not too appetizing, and I’m dehydrated already. When I ask what the tarifa (fixed rate) for a taxi to Puerto Banús is, we learn that it’s €15. Goodness, we’ll end up spending €30 just getting back and forth, and that’s more than the price of
The rain in Spain...
330 sun-kissed days each year?
a bottle of wine, or the equivalent of two entrees. Leroy makes the call to hole up at La Quinta again, so we eat at their Los Arcos restaurant and order chicken and seafood paella and the Riscal rioja 2005. There’s so much food we take some back to the room in a doggy bag.
The afternoon is spent blogging (it’s a lot of work, but we’ll live on the memories during intern year) and watching the “Little Miss Sunshine” DVD. I’ve seen it before, but Leroy hasn’t, and it’s on my recommendation that he even has it. He’s willing to give it a try for an hour and 37 minutes. Any longer, and he would have vetoed it, I think. Well, he enjoys it, particularly Alan Arkin’s off-color remarks about Sunset Cove, having lots of sex while young, and second degree burns on his Johnson. “I kid you not!” Then it’s to the bar for dinner since we want to avoid the cubierto charge at the restaurants. A burger BLT for me and a tortilla mexicana for Lee, and our favorite Marqués de Riscal 2002. Why is Ronaldinho So Mad?
The plasma screen is showing some boring
The rain in Spain...
It's all good, we're holing up.
golf, which every other gringo in the place seems to like but ignore at the same time. I ask the bartender if there happens to be anything interesting on, like say, a football match. An hour later, he changes the channel in preparation for the 10pm Barcelona vs. Getafe match, the third to last in the Premier Spanish Liga. Real Madrid and Barcelona are tied for first in La Liga, with Sevilla at third. Real Madrid is playing right now, before the Barcelona game, and is set to win. If Barcelona wants to keep up with them, they’ll have to win this game. I’m excited to see Ronaldinho, of course, and Leroy is now a bigger fan of Messi than he is of Eto’o. At two minutes into the game, with a beautiful ball that goes from Messi to Eto’o and then to Ronaldinho, El Barça scores a goal. Before the end of the half though, Ronaldinho gets a red card for allegedly kicking someone in the family jewels. He is very angry as he leaves the field. Coach Rijkaard has to try to calm him. We are already livid at the extremely poor referee-ing of the game. The man is off his rocker. From the first minute, he’s been making bad calls, angering not only us but all the fans at Camp Nou. The game is totally out of control, with yellow cards being given out like candy for dumb calls, and the footballers are clearly getting heated. The tension is palpable, and I blame the referee for creating this situation.
I don’t know what happens exactly to get Ronaldino the red card. First, he’s running with the ball and looks like he could score. Then, the defender stops him somehow, probably fouling him. But then, Ronaldinho falls to the ground and when there, slaps the back of the defender with his hand. He also kicks up his foot at least twice, and on the second, his foot looks like it hits the privates of the running defender. Another player comes over and pushes Ronaldinho, and then Deco comes over and shoves that guy. It looks like a fight will break out, but the other players both get in the mix and try to break it up. Then, Ronaldinho gets the red card and is removed from the game. They are saying that he will not only be ineligible to play in the next game, but in the last one of the season as well. (A couple days later, in the face of an appeal, officials are still deciding if he’ll actually be able to play both remaining games, although I’m not sure why they might change their minds).
Being a single-minded Ronaldinho fan, I’m convinced at first that either the defender walked into his foot or the defender said or did something to deserve a kick in the jewels. But, replay after replay, I’m instead perplexed as to why Ronaldinho is so mad. He is my favorite player because of his love of the game and his smile after every play, successful or not. He is a team player and a great symbol for soccer. I’ve never seen him mad like this, and he’s had a bad time all year. Even when referees refuse to call fouls against him and when he is double-teamed and downright bullied on the field, he always just gets back up, shakes his head, and smiles it off. So what happened to make Ronaldinho Gaúcho so mad?
Well, stick it to Getafe. Barcelona still won 1-0 with a 10-man team.
Tot: 0.899s; Tpl: 0.021s; cc: 10; qc: 30; dbt: 0.0121s; 1; m:saturn w:www (188.8.131.52); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.3mb