I’ll start with an obvious statement: Spain in February is much warmer and sunnier and by far dryer than the UK. So I feel like I can’t possibly complain while every time I facetime my family or friends back home they are right in the middle of storm Dennis, or Ciara, or another civilised named storm that has hit the UK recently, but February in Spain is missing one thing… weekends of drinking cider black and watching the six nations.
Rugby in Spain, while it is growing in popularity, is still nowhere near as big a thing as it is in the UK. Instead of rugby, other sports are much more popular, for example, basketball, a sport in which Spain has dominated in the past few years and last year they beat Argentina in the final to win the 2019 basketball world cup. So, it is fair to say that rugby game days in Spain are not quite the same as back home.
The atmosphere in Cardiff is like no other. The population of the city seems to quadruple, and it is perfectly acceptable to walk down Queens Street with a pint in hand and a giant daffodil on your head. So naturally I had to find a place which showed every game and gave me a small bit of Cardiff in Spain. Well, I didn’t quite find Cardiff but I found Ireland. In Granada there are a number of Irish pubs where you can watch the rugby and get a pint, which seems pretty basic but it is surprisingly difficult to get a pint in Spain, as beers usually come as cañas (half pints) and it is very rare to find a Spanish bar that will show the rugby. While the streets aren’t flooded with rugby fans like at home, the pubs are always so busy with guiris (foreigners) from different places and it has been such a good place to take a break from Spanish life and talk to people about things we miss from home. And I can’t forget to add that the underlying hatred of the English rugby team by Irish, Scottish and Welsh fans makes me feel right back at home! So while it is important to immerse yourself in the culture of the country you are living, sometimes you just need something that reminds you of home.