Our Russian asistenta’s Spanish is – how shall I put it? – a bit incomprehensible, but we manage just fine. Every Friday she lets herself in at 7 am and starts in the sala de estar – the opposite end to where we’re all asleep.
One Friday I forgot to tell her that the following week some friends would be staying. So I phoned her: either my friends or I would be sleeping in the sala when she arrived, I said, so she would find that door closed and should start in the kitchen or dining room.
“No preocupas, Valeriya,” came the reply. “No problyema. Yo, rata.”
We know she meant she’d be as quiet as a mouse (ratón). Or maybe she’d made some tenuous but apt connection with the popular Catalan fairy tale. Whatever, we’re still laughing (not unkindly.) This one will definitely be immortalised in our family antología.