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My grandfather’s town and New York

Paloma Rupérez  /  My grandfather was born in a town in Cuenca called Puebla de Almenara, a place that you will never find, it is not passing by, it requires the inexcusable will to go there, at the foot of the Sierra Jarameña. And we have that will and we keep coming to let ourselves be wrapped up in the gentle hills culminating in the wonderful castle of Almenara amidst holm oaks, almond trees and slopes of red earth where vines are grown.

The town had better times and more abundant demographics, now the population has shrunk and aged. The streets are lonely, you can’t find a stray dog ​​and the bars have been disappearing, amid loneliness and human passions, shops and almost any sign of life that, however, can be guessed behind the lowered blinds and in the parish that goes to a magnificent and omnipresent church with a tall bell tower that points the way when you are approaching down the road.

Time and silence weigh heavily and the urban customs of reading the newspaper and having a coffee in a bar are missed. Every now and then we wonder

– Shall we go to New York?

Our particular New York is called Villamayor de Santiago, about 15 kilometers away and it is a paradise of bars, shops, swimming pools, wineries, cheese factories. The first sign of modernity is found at the entrance of the town: a gas station, an essential resource for any excursion. But what fascinates us is the variety: the newspaper shop, food establishments, supermarkets, perfumeries and those bazaars where you can find everything, from a paint for garden furniture to the necessary anti-mosquito spirals and even a florist !!!

The new acquisition of Villamayor de Santiago is a Chinese family that has managed to set up the familiar oriental labyrinth of shelves where they offer you everything from kitchen utensils, farm carts, sun loungers and beach chairs. The Chinese matriarch leads the entire business with a determined and serious hand and orders the operations of the day with an authoritarian and metallic voice, she does not allow haggling!

We always sit at Bar Sol, a model of cordiality and sympathy, in addition to the pleasure of savoring a magnificent coffee and delicious tapas prepared by the family that owns the bar.

– How good it is in New York! We always say to Santiago when she brings us that coffee that we enjoy so much. Villamayor and New York sound the same, although the two words of the American city are separated and the two of our particular “new-york” have been united … No one notices the joke and our good humor.

Our urban consumerism is a banality, Villamayor de Santiago is a serious and elegant town, with beautiful Renaissance houses and a spacious and aesthetic design of its streets and squares where you feel peace and harmony. The rest of the world is at your fingertips and your curiosity: very close, the Roman city of Segóbriga, a few kilometers from Belmonte, homeland of the childhood of Fray Luis de León and the infant Don Juan Manuel and site of the superb castle of Eugenia de Montijo, where medieval sets are currently held.

But we always return to Puebla, between holm oaks and olive trees, on the way we contemplate the white presence of the Hermitage of the Virgen de la Misericordia, which they say is the most miraculous in the area, and the silhouette of the Castle that survives the challenge that they propose the company of modern windmills that live off the impulse of the winds of the Sierra Jarameña. (August 21, 2020, PracticaEspañol)

(Automatic translation)

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Question 1
En el texto se habla de...  
un pueblo español que es muy visitado por los habitantes de una ciudad estadounidense.
un pueblo que se encuentra dentro del territorio español.
un pueblo que se encuentra en el estado de Nueva York.
Question 2
Sobre Puebla de Almenara se dice que...  
está muy cerca de la capital de España.
es un pueblo en el que vive mucha gente joven.
es un pueblo en el que no hay mucha actividad en las calles.
Question 3
Leyendo el texto entendemos que...  
Villamayor es un pueblo tan ruidoso como la ciudad estadounidense de Nueva York.
Villamayor de Santiago está tan despoblado como Puebla de Almenara.
en Villamayor de Santiago hay muchísima más actividad comercial que en Puebla de Almenara.
Question 4
Según el texto...  
dicen ir a  "Nueva York" para referirse a "Villamayor".
todos los habitantes de Villamayor también bromean diciendo que su pueblo es "Nueva York".
al oído "Villamayor" y "Nueva York" no se parecen en nada.
Question 5
Algo o alguien es "omnipresente" porque...  
lo sabe todo.
no está en ninguna parte.
está presente en todas partes.
Question 6
"Añorar" es...  
animar a alguien.
extrañar o echar algo de menos.
Question 7
Se habla de "regateo" cuando...  
el vendedor y el comprador discuten el precio de un producto.
el vendedor deja un producto apartado para un cliente.
el vendedor decide dejar de vender un producto.
Question 8
Por definición, el término "urbano" se refiere...    
a la ciudad.
al campo.
a la playa.
Question 9
Algo que  "está al alcance de la mano"...  
está escondido.
está muy lejos.
está cerca.
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