Our first night in Spain, we went to a restaurant near our apartment. There were huge cured ham legs hanging along one wall and a Spanish professional basketball game on the TV. We were fried from traveling and the menu, being in Catalan, was pretty perplexing. The owner, Jose Garcia, was very interested to hear where we were from. Another diner, Fausto, at a nearby table, motioned August over to talk to him. He and his wife, Lourdes, are Catalan. They complimented August on his Spanish, told him to continue studying Spanish, gave him a 10-trip ticket for the metro and we all struck up a very lively, Spanglish conversation, Jose included.
We returned the next night for wine and dessert. Then we told Jose we wanted a picture with his ham. He is very proud of his ham which, as we've sampled much since, we now know to be top quality.