Excerpt from Salud!: Poems, Stories and Sketches of Spain by American Writers; A Literary Pamphlet
I came home yesterday afternoon when the Ribas family was having dinner. Of the twelve who sat at the table, none were between the ages of ten and fifty. I was asked to eat. When I looked at the size Of the single earthenware jug in the fireplace, I answered that I had already had supper. An assortment of pots and tripods hung at the side of the fireplace. A beaked Olive - Oil lamp, of the type used by the Greeks and Phoenicians, hung in the center of the combined kitchen, dining and living room. The iron lamp and the fireplace fittings were SO well scrubbed that they looked like pewter. Unvarnished chairs and chests were worn with washing. The floor was of earth.
The mother lifted the crock from the fireplace and emptied a steaming mass of potatoes, smelling indubitably Of meat, into a large dish in the center of the table. Children and their elders took spoons and ate directly from the single plate. This method Of eating is called, in Aragonese, tot an plat. When the potatoes were eaten the meal was done.
While I ate, I tried to think of how I could organize a can of milk for the children. I could speak only to the farmer him self; the others could not understand or talk Castilian.
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