Andalusians are lazy. Myth!!

It’s probably much the same in any land across the world. Divide it up into regions and comparisons will be made about its peoples.

Do you know what they say in Spain about the Basques? They are stubborn. The Catalans? Tight with their money. The Madridleños are arrogant. Galicians are simply odd (oh dear!). And what of the Andalusians?


Lazy – averse or disinclined to work, activity, or exertion []

I lived on the north coast of Spain 20 years ago – near the stubborn people as it happens – and I still recall a conversation I had with my landlord who told me in no uncertain terms that he disliked all Andalusians because they were lazy. At that time I knew almost nothing about Spain’s most populated autonomous community, but it did strike me as odd that its inhabitants should be labelled in this way. 8.5 million lazy people is a lot of lazy people.

What, I wondered, was behind this claim? Was it a simple north / south divide? My mental wanderings soon found their conclusion: the heat. It’s too hot to work in Andalusia – that’s why they are all lazy!

But can you see the mistake I was making there? I was taking my landlord’s word for it rather than relying on direct personal experience. To assume, as we know, only makes an ASS out of U and ME. Better to see for myself if this laziness thing had a ring of truth to it!

I have lived in Andalusia for the last 10 years. Now I have seen for myself. The Andalusians are not lazy and I’ve got an example to prove it!

Meet Iván. He’s from Andalusia and he wouldn’t know Lazy if it kicked him squarely from behind. This guy is a 7-day-a-week working machine.


Last Tuesday morning I made the decision to renovate the apartment in my guesthouse. On Tuesday evening Iván – technically a builder by trade but a ‘Jack’ of all of them – paid me a visit to look over the work to be done. On Wednesday he came back to me with a full quote. By Friday morning two of his men were installed and work was underway. Iván and his father were not available until Saturday, when they duly appeared at 8am with three others to make up his A-Team of specialists. They worked tirelessly all Saturday and all Sunday, practically completing a job that would have taken most others around two weeks. All walls were rendered, electrical sockets were moved, new stairs were put in, the bathroom totally overhauled. It was skilled, fast, accurate, well thought out work. It was extraordinary to watch. Iván later told me that the trick is to always be thinking a step ahead.

from this

to this

Curro fashions new stairs into the apartment by using reclaimed bricks…


What’s going on here? Is this a bunch of lazy Andalusians I see before me?


Noooooo! This is Iván and his A-Team taking a well earned 20-minute break; during which time, believe it or not, the topic of conversation was the work which needed to be done next.

¡Viva Andalucía!

Until next time readers,


Jim Porter is a co-founder of Speekee®, home of the most comprehensive Spanish learning program for children ever to appear online

Jim began his Spanish learning journey in 1990. He has been a language teacher since 1994 and he lives in sunny southern Spain with his two bilingual children. Loves it! More…


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