Ahead of me in the queue at the fish stall at the Farmers' Market a talkative woman says to the fishmonger: "My grandmother used to say you should never buy fish after 8 o'clock in the morning..." After a pause she adds," but she was a Londoner".
The Belgian market gardener asks me if I speak Spanish. He recites the six word of Spanish he knows. Hola, Adios, Buenos dias ...etc". I ask him if knows manana, and with out explaining the old joke, say that it is the Spanish for urgent. It is lost on him. I walk on but he catches me up."I know something else in Spanish," he says beckoning me away from the crowd. "It must be rude," I say. "No," he says with a schoolboy giggle: " Yo te quiero, mi amor." Is this a declaration? Surely not.