Day 26: Stay Up, Eat Late. Welcome To Spain

Like many Americans, I tend to eat dinner around 6 or 7pm. This gives my body plenty of time to digest the food before I head off to bed. This way my stomach is grumbling and growling while I’m trying to fall asleep. Many American doctors recommend eating at least four hours before going to bed. But we’re not in America anymore, are we?

In comparison to the Germans, the Spanish are always taking things slow. Starting late is just part of living in Spain.  The people of Spain are so relaxed and friendly that punctuality isn’t as much of a priority in Spain.

Evidence of this is that breakfast doesn’t really exist in Spain. Throughout the streets of Barcelona you can see thousands of bars and cafes advertising “Tapas” on a sign the outside of the restaurant. Tapas is eventually a smal snack to hold you down until lunch time. Usually it will be something small like a tortilla, callas, or a coissant. A small snack is all a Spainaird needs to get through the morning, and a lot of people won’t even eat until lunchtime.

Dinner follows suit. In most cases dinner is typically eaten around 9pm or later. When I read the sign in our hostel saying that dinner was at 9pm, I began to wonder how on earth Spanish people ate so late.

The answer came when we spent a Wednesday night out in Spain. At around 10pm we shared  a wonderful Fideulá meal with about forty dorm mates in our hostel. Afterwards, shortly before midnight we all went out to a pub for about an hour. The bar began to fill up with more and more people. At 1:30am we all headed out of the bar and marched as a mob to the dance club down the street. We had a great time dancing for a couple hours and then Ari and I left at around 3am. The club was still full when we left!

This is simply how it’s done in Barcelona and many parts of Spain. Stay up late, wake up late. Eat late, drink late. Since everything is so belated here in Spain I’m sure that the Conquistadors had way less trouble adjusting to the “boat lag” when they first came to America.

But seriously, in terms of diabetes, you need to adjust yourself to the Spanish schedule and make sure that your blood sugar isn’t spiking when you eat later than usual. Keep an eye on your glucose as you eat late and stay up in España.

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