If you are Spanish, read this, but please don’t feel bad about me. PLEASE.
If you are a foreigner who is still “suffering” how to greet Spanish people in Spanish way, let’s suffer with me.
Yes, I am still not used to that Spanish habit of greeting.
In Spain, when you see a person you would say “Hola”(which means Hi in Spanish, y’all already know it) and also would kiss that person on the both side of cheek. It is called “besos”, which means “kisses” in Spanish. If you are male and the person who you greet is also male, in that case you don’t have to do that. However, girls, you have no choice. You have to kiss whoever you catch sight of. Welcome to Spain, the world of kisses.
I have already spent almost 4 months here in Spain and still I am not used to doing that. In Japan, it never happens that you kiss people when you see them. You know, we bow. Kiss friends or even strangers? No way. Well, not only Japanese, actually some of my friends from other countries also still aren’t used to doing it.
Now I have some good Spanish friends and usually hang out with them. But every time before I see them (even from the moment that I leave my house), a “bomb” starts growing in my head: “OK Rumi, the first thing you have to do today is that besos.” When I finally meet the friends and finish besos peacefully, I feel like I did a great mission and feel so relieved, even feel like “Yeeeaaahhh I did it! I can even go home already.”
However, my Spanish teacher told us in our class that just shake hand instead of give besos is not good thing in Spain. It seems you are cold person or you don’t trust them. Though I know that I usually shake hand when there is so many people or, if I see a person for the first time I sometimes make a face of “HELLO, I AM A FOREIGNER. FORGIVE ME.” and yeah, I am so sorry but, a handshake.
But I think I am finally getting used to it these days. I do it more than before. Well, If you live in other county, you have to respect their culture and follow their habits. (I am telling it to myself now, not to you guys actually.) I think this “besos culture” is lovely and beautiful way to show that you really give your heart to other people.
Now yes, the one which isn’t lovely nor beautiful is me. If you are Spanish and if I offer you a handshake one day, please slap my hand and you can give me that besos by force.
So at least I would feel saved, maybe.