Dream of:10 February 2011 (2) "Almuerzo"
My ex-wife Carolina (only about 25 years old) and I had won a trip to Europe. We had taken a plane and landed in northern Africa in either Algeria or Tunisia. I was uncertain, but thought we were probably in Tunisia. We had spent the night in a hotel, and now, the next morning, we were eating breakfast in a room full of other people also eating breakfast. I recalled that when we had rented our room, I had read that the "almuerzo" was included in the price of the room, and I had assumed that "almuerzo" meant "breakfast." Several plates of food were on the table and I was already eating something white from one plate.
A short squat woman (about 50 years old) was in charge of the place. In Spanish, she asked us if we wanted her to bring something else to us. When I asked her how much it would cost, she walked off.
I was thinking about what Carolina and I were going to do on the trip, which was supposed to last for seven or eight days. I thought we might sail to Israel, then sail back to Spain, then travel to either Paris or London and then fly back to the United States. I thought we might even stop in Rome on the way and sail to southern Spain from there. We might even go to Lisbon.
I began to realize, however, that the extra traveling was going to cost extra money and I had only brought about $1,000 with me. I wished I had brought more money. I had left some American Express cards at home. I didn't want to run out of money and be forced to call my father. I was going to have to pay for all the hotels, and the trip on the boat would be expensive. I thought we might have to cancel the trip to Israel, and instead go straight to Spain and travel north from Spain. I needed to economize as much as possible.
Meanwhile, the woman brought out the other plate about which she had been talking. The plate consisted of cottage cheese and two tomatoes, one for Carolina and one for me. I asked the woman how much everything was going to cost. I was starting to have the feeling that the woman was going to try to charge us not only for the food we had already eaten, but also for the new plate of food. She walked away, returned, and handed me a bill for 60 pesetas. Since I thought there were five or six pesetas in a dollar, I thought she was trying to charge us an extra $10. I started arguing with her in Spanish. I told her that the "almuerzo" was included in the price of the room. She said that it wasn't included.
I didn't want to pay, but I didn't want to get the police involved. I thought the woman believed that Carolina and I were dumb tourists who could be easily swindled. It was turning into a bit of a mess.
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