And We’re Live

**I mean it this time. WordPress help center had to launch due to a little bug. It’s live now.

It’s never a dull moment around here. I don’t enjoy spending a lot of time in the toddler pool. We are people who swim in the deep end. And we have a very looong list of things to do to get the business going so, right about now, the water in our world is the ocean.

Cash in Hand

Yesterday, I went into town to meet with the bank. They do things very different in Spain than I’m used to. And the language barrier isn’t helping. I had to drop off a bunch of cash to various vendors in town as I am unable to use my business bank account, yet. In the US, when you open an account and put money in it, you can use that money straight away. Here, you have a temporary status until you receive deeds from the registrar in the capitol. And until you sign yet another set of documents at the notaría. I think I have everything done except for those last signatures and am just waiting for our gestor to send us the appointment time. I’m not worried about because I know everyone in Melide who is involved with this things is personally invested in our success. As I told the lady at the bank who explained it all to me – it’s just different than I am used to. It’s not bad, just different.

And speaking of the bank, when I arrived and our banker wasn’t there the other women asked me to wait. The bank manager was in his office. In my brief experience of this particular bank, he does a lot of yelling. He came out and asked, at volume, why, I, a customer was sitting there when no other customers were in the bank. One of the brave ones spoke up, and since my español is getting quite good I understood her, even though she tried to whisper.

‘She is waiting for Maria.’

The manager frowned. ‘Where is Maria? And why can’t you help her?’

The girl wrung her hands. ‘That customer is very excitable. I think it is better if Maria talks to her.’

So I need to find out why they think I am ‘excitable’. Perhaps it was that one time when they told me they couldn’t help me with something when our insurance agent stepped in to smooth things out. Note to self: Stop using the phrase ‘Seriously? Are you joking?’ at the bank.

Making it Official

Then, I headed to the print shop. The woman there has thwarted me before. I had every format under the sun on that flash drive. But she wanted another one and it was the only one I could imagine her not wanting. That was months ago. I wasn’t under any kind of time constraint. Now, I need to get things moving and I will need a stamp for the pilgrim’s passports. So I ventured back and rolled the dice.

I greeted her and she me. Then I explained in Castellon that I needed un sello automatico y un sello de madera. An automatic self-inking stamp and an old school one with a wooden handle. I say Castellon because in Galicia they don’t seem to refer to this as español. They all speak Gallego in our area. If I speak español they say something about it and there is always ‘She only speaks Castellon.’ To which I want to reply ‘Thank you for saying I speak Castellon. (they’re being generous here) What you don’t understand is how hard it was for me to learn it, rudimentarily.’ But I don’t. Then they say ‘Someday you learn Gallego.’ And I think – Yeah, when I’m 90.

This time the woman at the shop was very nice. She had no other customers. I introduced myself and asked her name. Lola and I are now friends. As we continued our interaction her ingles came out. And my español slipped from it’s fearful hiding place and decided to show off a little. I think we were both surprised. She was very complimentary about it.

I have learned that whenever I do any kind of operation in town I should give myself an hour afterwards. Stop off and have a coffee. Read the news. Because, invariably, I am called back to whatever establishment I have been dealing with to complete something that was missed or to make a decision that was not previously available to me in the first meeting. This happened with the print shop. Twice. Good thing I realized that when she called me back the first time, my hour started over.

After my big day out in town, our contractor stopped by to have me sign some things. He walked the property again and we talked things through in detail. He stepped back a bit from what he had told me previously and is eager to push this thing through. He encouraged me to order the food truck posthaste. ‘Don’t wait, Kelli. We will get started with the works the moment we get permission. You should have your truck here ready to go.’

But it seems I am unable to order the truck because I have yet to sign at the notaía. I have the money in the account but I have no way to access it. After two deep breaths, I know it will be fine. There will be something that comes along where I will say ‘Thanks goodness I had to wait a week.’ I have no idea what that would be but I am sure it will be there, looming in the background.

O Café de Felicidade is Live

And finally, my O Café de Felicidade website is live. You can check it out here. It’s not exactly how I want it but it is good enough to show the Concello, the Tourism board in Lugo, and the Patrimonio del Camino de Santiago that we are serious about this business. And that we have a digital presence. I’ll be blogging as we go through the process of opening our business. If you are so inclined you are welcome to follow along.

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