Day Four: Shopping!
That’s Shopping with a capital S, because it’s an Important Thing. Twice a year, every item in the entire country goes on sale; once right after Christmas and again in July, Spain begins its rebajas.
That means sales everywhere from the smallest hat shop to the Corte Inglés, which is the department store that I suspect runs the whole country. While I was walking from shop to shop, I saw at least two dozen people carrying red Corte Inglés rebajas bags, and I wasn’t even really counting.
There are all kinds of laws protecting the shoppers during rebajas. For example, stores are legally required to post the old and new prices on each item. They also have to display the start and end dates of the sale; these rebajas were scheduled to start on July 1, but as soon as the first store started to put up their sale signs, it spread like wildfire. Many stores are already on their “second” rebajas, where they lower the price on the already-discounted merchandise. Do you see why people are so serious about going to these sales?
Also, if you look closely in Cortefiel’s window, you can see me leaning against a tree, trying not to look like a tourist… that man on the bench was totally judging me.
Thankfully for my wallet and my suitcases, I didn’t find anything I liked. But I had fun anyway and, since you would be hard-pressed to find a Madrilenian who hasn’t been to the rebajas yet, it was a real Spanish experience.