Where's My Bed?! February, 1981

February, 1981, and we're living in Talavera de la Reina.

I'm teaching English to two children whose parents own shops in the town. All of a sudden the doorbell goes and I find the parents standing in the doorway in shock, panic-stricken.

"We've come to pick up our children, señora."
"Yes, they need to come now. Right now.  Hurry up!"
"Why? What's happened?" I'm surprised to see the parents for they never burst in like that in the middle of a lesson.
"Shots. There were shots fired in the Parliament in Madrid."
"Nobody knows what is going to happen!"

They all leave just as fast as they had appeared.

I wonder what they're talking about, what's going on? The one person who'll know is the portero. He knows everything about everything and about everyone. Even what he doesn't know he makes up. Still, he's a good person to talk to.

Downstairs I go to look for the portero.

He's panic-stricken too. "Señora!  Ay, señora!  Shots fired in Madrid. Be careful!"

I begin to wonder if everyone has gone mad. Madrid is a good 90 minute drive away.

"My wife has gone to buy flour and sugar. Lots of it. Who knows how long we'll need it?"

I'm now certain that people are going crazy around these parts.

"People are closing their businesses. They're going home and locking the door. Señora, you do the same."

I dawdle upstairs to the apartment, all the time wondering what has caused this hysteria.

My husband returns from work.

"Pack your bags. We're going to Portugal!"

What? Not you? You're also going crazy?  Am I the only sane one around here?!

My husband explains that something big has gone on in Madrid, how the military has taken over the government and how nobody knows what could happen. He figures we should perhaps go over the border to Portugal until events settle down.

In the end we decide it's safer just to stay, for who knows what the road could be like?  We sit up to the wee small hours watching the recording of some man play the guitar on the funny little black and white television. There is no information being emitted. We know nothing. Maybe we should have gone over the border? Maybe there will be another Spanish Civil War? Yikes!

Later, the King appears on the television, looking serious and in command. By his side is his son. The King gives a riveting speech. He tells people to stay at home, not to be on the street. and bellows forth, "¡Viva la Democracia!  ¡Viva España!"

Well, really. Now can we go to our bloody bed?!

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