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Saturday, February 04, 2006

Telenovela Alborada, #12

If you are new to Alborada, please visit the recaps in ORDER - see the bottom of this post for information.

Wednesday: Hipólita asks Antonio if he did, in fact, divorce her - evidently when a wife is gone for long enough, the husband can have the marriage dissolved. "No, I just said that to stop Juana's inconvenient questions. But -- you WANT a divorce, don't you." Hipólita says yes, and that she's in love with Luis. This troubles Antonio; Diego has been telling awful stories (mostly lies) about Luis and Antonio doesn't want her hurt by a nogoodnik...

He says, "there are things I always thought I should tell you about me, but now I guess there's no point. But I owe you - so I'll give you a divorce if it's what you want." He tries halfheartedly to get her to admit there's a child, but she denies it.

Fussy, wimpy Asunción tells her daughter Catalina not to hang out with Isabel's ward Marina any more. "Hasn't your father been telling us she had sex with Diego?" "But he raped her, it wasn't her fault!" "All the same, you shouldn't be friends with her, especially now that Cristóbal will be sending suitors over to meet you. We wouldn't want them to think you're on her level." Hipólita comes in, all happy for once, since Antonio has agreed to divorce her. She seems to be confident Luis will get HIS divorce and then the road will be clear.

Luis, meanwhile, is fuming and raging. The second midwife has confirmed that Esperanza is pregnant. Luis tells his "mother" Doña Juana he will denounce his wife Esperanza to the Inquisition. Juana is horrified and tells him he must sit on his indignation and say nothing or "She'll go to prison for adultery and sacrilege. Maybe be condemned to death! The scandal! ... Maybe we'll get lucky and she'll die of this pregnancy." Luis is beyond disgusted. He asks Santiago if it could have happened in his house while Esperanza was visiting there. "No, I swear it."

Luis asks Felipe: "How can I tell Hipólita?" If he denounces Esperanza for adultery, she'll go to jail or be executed, but if he doesn't denounce her, then as purported father of her child he can't get his divorce. "Don't tell me I have to suck it up!" He can't believe Esperanza would have sex with a fulano just to stop the divorce.

Fulano: "so-and-so, what's-his-name." Fulano, mengano, y zutano = "Tom, Dick and Harry." Fulana: hooker, slut.

Victoria, the former Pirate Queen, leaves her mother's home for an outing. La Poderosa to her dwarf: "Why didn't you stop her?" Dwarf: "You know better than anybody how independent she is." "But somebody is going to recognize her!"

Gasco and his bad dude Ramon, kidnapper (hiding his face), stroll through the plaza. Gasco does in fact recognize Victoria on her outing. He has a flashback: an older man is shouting at a younger but just as bad Gasco, "The man you killed is the younger brother of Fray Bartolome de Valdes, the Inquisitor General!" "How was I supposed to know? They lived in such a modest house." Reason they lived that way: "The Inquisitor was mad at his brother because he married a Jew - Victoria, daughter of Sara." So I guess Sara is La Poderosa and Victoria the Pirate Queen was once married to the younger brother of the Grand Inquisitor.

Then the older man told Gasco, Quiero que lo entregues a la niña. OK, I kind of give up. Does this mean "I want you to give him the child?" Give who the child? Help?

Hipólita, in her second happy half-minute, bounces down the stairs to tell Luis she'll be able to get her divorce. His long face alerts her to a problem. "Esperanza IS expecting a child, I swear it's not mine." Realizing this will end Luis's chances of getting a divorce, Hipólita is beyond crushed. He says, "Maybe things will work out." "You mean you hope your wife will die?" "I'll denounce her, it's my right." "But you did the same thing to her (had an illegitimate child)." "Nothing is fair in this world." "I'm tired, go away."

Diego and Esperanza are brainstorming in her boudoir: who shall they blame for her pregnancy? Martin? He's dead, that makes him convenient... No, Luis will never believe that... How about Vicente or Gasco? No, the kid won't be ugly enough to make that convincing. [Is this actually another JOKE? Ha!] Well then, how about Andrés? He was handsome. Andrés, who's that?

Just then Esperanza's brother Santiago barges in, surprised to see Diego there: "You receive men in your room?" "But he's the Count!" Santiago continues: "Luis says the child is not his, is that true?" "Yes, I was raped by, uh, Andrés."

Diego tells his mom Doña Juana that the selected fall-guy is Andrés. "But will Francisco believe that? It should be a nobody, a stranger." Too late - Santiago comes in and delivers Esperanza's newly invented story about Andrés. Diego turns away to hide his giddy delight. Juana tells Santiago, who fully expects Luis to go right out and kill Andrés: "No, Luis will suck it up to avoid scandal. And you'll have to do the same - after all, we all hid your father's indiscretion (the fathering of Hipólita) for years, so you must do the same for the sake of your sister's honor."

(Juana uses the lovely word merequetengue which is not in any of my dictionaries. Anybody?)

njmotmot writes: "If you google "merequetengue," it's all over the web but it's not so easy to figure out what it means - or rather it means lots of things. It is a dance or rhythm related to the merenque and it is a kind of soup. One entry was a definition and said that in popular language it referred to the "goce del acto sexual" or pleasure of the sexual act. In other entries, it seems to mean a big mess or something all confused. That might be how Juana uses it... My Spanish teacher - a Mexican woman - agrees with my conclusion that merequetenga means 'a big mess.'"

Hipólita is in bed with the blinds drawn. She tells Ada there are two roads ahead of her: one, the road of the heart, and the other, the road of dignity.

Antonio tells Diego and Gasco, who ride up on horses and join him for drinks on the plaza, that he's agreed to give Hipólita a divorce. Hearing of Esperanza's pregnancy puts a different face on the matter...

Isabel and her ward have been visiting the Escobars (Francisco, Asunción, and Catalina, who can no longer talk to Marina since her mom gave that lecture). Aurelio, Isabel's new money-man, wants to talk to Isabel as she leaves but she says "tomorrow."

As she and Marina are driving away from the Palacio de Lara (Cristóbal's place) Isabel curses the Escobars as besapilas santurrones, the worst she's ever known.

I'm guessing that besapilas means "kiss-ass" and santurrones are hypocrites. What a great description of Francisco and Asunción!!!!

Isabel: "Why were you so silent, Marina, and why weren't you hanging out with Catalina?" Marina: "I didn't have anything to say, and she didn't invite me to walk with her as she usually does. Say, do me a favor, next time you visit the Escobars, please let me stay home. They look at me with scorn." Isabel: "That Francisco thinks himself higher than he is, and as for Asunción, she bore a bastard, what make them so great? You shouldn't be ashamed, there is scandal in the best families, look at Luis, when people find out about him and Esperanza they'll die laughing, Caray Caray!" [I myself am thinking of using this phrase, it sounds so adorable coming out of Isabel's mouth -- Ed.] "So shape up, pull yourself together, Marina!"

La Poderosa once again begs Victoria to stay hidden, but our Pirate Queen is determined to go to the capitol. "I've spent twenty years dealing with thieves and assassins, look in my eyes, do you think I'm an innocent? Think I can't defend myself? It's been years since I saw Don Ignacio, surely he's found my daughter by now, though maybe he doesn't want to tell me so."

Marcos, lifelong friend of the now dead Martin, is having dinner with Felipe and Carmela. Felipe speculates that Don Diego may be the father of Esperanza's fetus! "What better way to insult Luis!?" He then muses: "I need to be busy, I have to go back to work, but I don't dare leave Carmela alone (with her crazy grief)." Carmela comes in, beaming to see Marcos, and begs him to move into their house. Marcos freezes with his mouth open, is that a yes or a no?

At a tavern, Cristóbal lectures Luis. "Perhaps God is punishing you for being unfaithful." Luis can't believe his ears. "Cristóbal, I've always believed in your intelligence, your open way of living ... ?" "That's precisely why they threw me out of seminary." "Don't preach at me. You know my life [recaps his many misfortunes] and now I've met the perfect woman for me and can't have her? You think I shouldn't curse my luck? Well, I'm not resigned to this fate." He goes home and his aunt Isabel, crying for him, hugs him and says "I'm with you to the end." Awww. I love Isabel.

Cristobal cries over his rosary, beneath a huge crucifix. "It's my arrogance, I can't take the rejection [from the seminary]. I'm lost, help me, God."

Hipólita sadly dreams about her ruined hopes for a life with Luis, and then about her pledge that her son Rafael will grow up among decent people. At this point, Antonio no doubt looks a lot more decent than these crazy people Hipólita has been hanging out with (including her own family).

It's getting around that Andrés is the one who could not control his lust for Esperanza! Luis asks his "mother" Juana, disbelievingly: "Do you really believe that?" "Why not, he's a rustic young man of the outback." Luis steams out as Juana says unconvincingly, "Don't kill him..." and then mutters to herself, "God willing, he'll kill him."

Luis goes to Esperanza and listens to her preposterous story (about being ravished by Andrés), ever more embellished with sordid details and gasping sobs. Why didn't you cry out, he covered my mouth, why did you say it was mine, to hide my sin, your sin? She starts shrieking about her sin. Luis says, "Calm down, this isn't good for the baby," and leaves. Mirtha, surprised and pleased: "Even I believed your story."

We end with Antonio visiting Hipólita again. At this moment he seems an honorable man who just has a few, uh, weaknesses. He's quite charismatic and has a gorgeous voice and I like his gentle, quiet aura amid the mishigas. He says: "So Luis's wife really is pregnant. What do you want to do? Would you like to come home with me?" He is sweet and tender. Relieved to be with somebody offering something evidently simple and straightforward, Hipólita falls crying into his kindly teddy-bear embrace.

Thursday: Antonio continues to lull Hipólita with his beautiful voice: "We'll pretend it was all a bad dream and we'll go home. What future is there for you here? Give me a chance to repair the damage I did to you." Antonio says of course we'll bring your son Rafael.

Felipe comes back to work; his wife Carmela is taking a calming tonic. Felipe and Marcos suspect Diego is the father of Esperanza's criatura. They don't believe Andrés would have done it, but accompany Luis in a search for him.

La Poderosa's daughter Victoria is off to the capitol in search of Don Ignacio, who may be able to tell her where her daughter is. "Be very careful!" I think it's Sara - La Poderosa - who has sent a spy (as a used clothes vendor) to find out where Ramon and the mute are. He hears Gasco has also been looking for them.

Antonio meets his buddy Rodrigo at their usual embibing-spot on the plaza and tells him he's going back to Santa Rita with Hipólita. "But she has a child by another man!" "Don't mention that again, it isn't her fault." "What about your investment (in the vanilla plantation)?" "I'm not going through with it, I don't want to deal with Luis." This annoys Rodrigo because:
  1. Don Diego owes Rodrigo money (for the adulterated cochinilla) but doesn't have it to give him;
  2. Antonio was going to pay Diego for an interest in the vanilla plantation;
  3. Diego was going to use Antonio's money to repay Rodrigo.
So if Antonio doesn't invest, Rodrigo doesn't get his dough.

Hipólita tells Ada they're going back to Panama. "My life as a woman is over, I have to think about my son Rafael, I don't want him growing up marginalized as I was." Antonio and Hipólita will live like brother and sister. She starts packing. She tells her half-sister Catalina she's leaving but asks her to tell no one.

Santiago tells his pregnant sister Esperanza what Juana told him: that their father Agustín was also Hipólita's father. Esperanza rages at the very idea. She then tells Santiago that if Luis won't kill Andrés (the selected fall-guy for her pregnancy) then he, Santiago, must, for the sake of her honor.

Aurelio, Cristóbal's house manager who is now helping Aunt Isabel with her finances, brings the news that Isabel has tons of money she didn't know about. She is also owed a tremendous debt including 20 years of unpaid interest! "Who owes me all this money? Caray, caray!" "You're never going to believe it" "Marina, bring me a cordial so I don't faint!" Her debtor is Doña Juana! Isabel explodes with laughter. Juana and Diego don't have the money to pay her back. Aurelio suggests she take a property in exchange. "That silver mine? And then I'd have to take care of it? No no no."

Isabel explains to Marina: this hefty inheritance is from her great-aunt in Peru. Isabel's brother had expected to get all the dough, and on that expectation Juana had married him! But the money went instead to Isabel!

After the death of Isabel's brother (Juana's husband), Juana took up the "reins of business" but made bad decisions and ended up borrowed money. LOTS of money.

Marina suggests Isabel buy the Guevara estate - the one Diego and Juana etc live in, the one Diego threw her out of. This makes Isabel grin broadly. Marina asks: "When are you going to tell Juana?" "There's no hurry!" "But Don Diego ran you off!" "That's exactly why I want to choose the perfect moment, so I can enjoy it most. Revenge is a dish best served cold."

Antonio tells Diego he no longer wants to invest with him in the vanilla plantation because he doesn't care to have dealings with his business partner, Diego's cousin Luis.

This rattles Diego, who is desperate for the money. Diego sweetens the pot, offering Antonio the majority stake. Antonio says ok. He will visit the plantation tomorrow. There isn't much time: Diego insists it all be wrapped up before the departure for Panama.

Luis, Felipe and Marcos ride up to the Palacio de Lara and find Andrés there. Luis shakes him like a rat and screams in his face about the rape. Andrés swears most sincerely that he'd never have the nerve, or the stupidity, to touch Luis's wife. He's believable enough that the trio leaves without killing him.

Luis buries his head in Hipólita's hair in great sorrow over the wasp's nest he's gotten into. "Don't abandon me, I need you more than ever." She tells him she's going back to Panama, he says she can't, she says "You're not the boss of me. I want Rafael to have a family, not a father who sneaks away to visit him now and then - and a mother who's a back-door girl."

Cristóbal visits his sister, head of the convent. He's upset about the lecture he gave Luis about infidelity. "I'm not the one to be giving sermons on Justice and Divine Punishment. Luis is my brother, he needs the advice of a friend, not the reproaches of a fanatic." Then his sister noodges him about Catalina: she's a good muchacha, he's got a chance to have his own family. "What, I should get her hopes up, and then not be able to go through with it?" What a wuss!

Aunt Isabel blasts into Esperanza's boudoir and asks: "Who put the horns on my nephew?" Esperanza trots out her lie about Andrés and manages to squeeze out a few tears. Marina is devastated -- but Isabel reassures her: "Andrés couldn't violate a fly, and besides, he's in love with you, Marina!" "But what if Luis kills him?!" "Well yes, there's that, I mean, no, I'm sure he'd make sure it was true first! OK, we'll go talk to him."

Francisco reminds his son Andrés: Diego once bragged he was shagging a woman in the palace. It must have been Esperanza! Francisco: "We have a goldmine in our hands, we can blackmail Diego for our silence!" Andrés is furious: "Dad, you would sell my good name?" He realizes Diego could have him killed quick as anything! Andrés refuses to participate and stalks out.

Luis wrinkles his brow trying to piece it all together: if nobody would have the nerve to rape his wife Esperanza, then she wasn't raped - which means she's protecting somebody. Who?

The rest was recap. At the end Juana summons Antonio and tries to persuade him to leave Rafael behind with her when he and Hipólita leave for Panama. She supposes he'd rather have his "own" heirs... He snaps: "Of COURSE I can have my own children!" She opens her eyes in mild surprise.

Friday: I am way too sick tonight to watch this on tape, so you're getting the on-the-fly translation. I'm sure if I miss something important you'll let me know.

Juana goes on trying to convince Antonio to leave her grandson (Rafael) at Cuencas when he leaves. He says he'll bring Rafael up as his own, but Juana says: "It will be different when you have your own. This one is the son of a man you hate! He is my only grandson; here, he will be brought up as Count of Guevara, with a fortune!" Antonio: "But Esperanza is expecting, and Diego may have sons." "I don't want to leave my future to the caprices of fate."

Cristóbal apologizes to Luis for criticizing him - I was rigid and unfair. Luis is nice about it.

Francisco finds his son Andrés at Marcos's place and hammers away with his blackmail scheme (to extort money from Diego in return for silence about his shagging of Esperanza). Andrés doesn't want to keep quiet and says, "You don't understand. I lied for Diego, he's a bad and vengeful man." Andrés is convinced Diego will have them killed if they try blackmail. Francisco: "So we'll blackmail Juana." "But you think she's any better? She'll have Gasco kill us." "We'll do it by letter." "If you want this done, dad, you're going to do it alone." "OK, but if I get rich this way don't think I'm going to share with you if you don't help - you're on your own."

Various discussions about whether Antonio is or isn't an afeminado, able or unable to have children of his own; whether Antonio and Hipólita will be able to take Rafael without Luis's permission; whether Ada's prior registration of Rafael as HER son might be valid; about its not being Andrés who got Esperanza pregnant. It's 12 days till the next boat to Panama.

Diego, with yet another mask, rags Luis about "the horns" and Luis punches him senseless on the floor. I liked that.

Hipólita is less than pleased when Antonio tells her: "I'm "cured" and can have sex now, and I intend to, and I intend to have children with you!" She hadn't really taken sex into consideration when she decided to leave with him. She thought they'd live as brother and sister! She thinks, eew, not after Luis... She's also mightily shaken to hear Antonio seriously considering Juana's plan to leave Rafael behind - though by the end of the episode she says it would be fair to send Rafael to stay with Luis now and again.

Santiago leaves for home. He says goodbye to Luis and asks what he's going to do about Esperanza. Answer: Nothing - for the sake of the family he'll eat it, but he'll never look at her again.

Then Santiago tells Juana he's mortified by the behavior of his sister and says she's not right in the head. Juana: "That's what we all think." Juana insists Santiago's and Esperanza's father Agustín was indeed also Hipólita's father: "These things happen." Juana rolls her eyes, glad to see Santiago leave: "One less annoyance!"

When his sister Esperanza asks Santiago, again, to kill Andrés, he brushes it off - not even he believes her any more. "Why did you lie to me?" "The Virgin made me do it..."

Luis goes to see Felipe, whose wife Carmela is doing better now that she has Marcos to feed. Marcos obediently follows her to the kitchen to eat enchiladas ("They were Martin's favorite!") and Luis and Felipe plan to leave for the beach settlement to find Martin's murderer. They talk business. Felipe: "Spain is always at war and every year produces less." Luis: "That's why we have to get into our own production." Felipe: "I've been thinking we should have a factory for yarn and weaving, but it will be better in future to leave Diego out of the business." We are introduced to Don Erasmo and his sister Anastasia. Don't know if we'll ever see them again.

Aunt Isabel, who wants to keep little Rafael around as much as Juana and Modesta do, proposes the best way to do this is to keep Hipólita from leaving! Modesta says, yes, that's best - if Hipólita stays, "many things might happen." How menacing!

Aurelio tells Cristóbal about Juana being in debt to Isabel to the tune of 60,000 gold pesos. "Only an important property will pay this debt."

Luis comes to see Hipólita. He holds Rafael and whispers to him that they share the same blood and nothing can erase that. He, too, rags Hipólita about her husband wanting more kids (she's thinking "eew" again) and not treating Rafael as one of his own. They shout and he reminds her Antonio was complicit in the plot which left her pregnant with a bastard: "Why didn't he come in [to the bedroom where Luis was shagging Hipólita] and kill me like a dog?" She reminds Luis that he (Luis) has nothing respectable to offer her.

Cristóbal to Catalina: "I sholdn't be talking to you about this, but your dad wants me to find you a husband. Do you want to marry?" "Yes, don't you? Don't you think of a family? I love kids, I love to see them laugh..." Her ruminations enchant Cristóbal, especially when she says: "I prefer a husband chosen by the heart." He asks if she likes to read. "Yes, but in the convent it was just Lives of the Saints." He opens a cabinet and shows her books about astronomy, botonical medicine, the eclipse... She says she would like to read about the eclipse, "They say plants even grew at night." They are both adorable in this scene, they really light up. These are the first real sentences they've ever spoken to each other. He runs after her when she leaves - he wants to extend the conversation. He's so pathetic! But improving a bit.

The trip to the vanilla plantation is like a little infomercial. With pleasant campesino music playing and "indigenous language" being spoken, a narrator tells us how to grow and process vanilla. In case you were thinking of getting into the business, like Antonio.

There was another joke! This makes three! When Antonio, holding a vanilla bean thoughtfully (like he's really learning about the business this way - well, at least there ARE vanilla beans, that's something), glances toward Gasco (who's been told to make nice on this trip), Gasco tries a ghastly and unconvincing smile, then scowls behind his back. I giggled.

mjmotmot: "It's not surprising that Diego's business dealing are
unsuccessful with Gasca as his representative. Gasca is the guy you send to make
people pay the rent, not schmooze potential business partners."

In one of the commercials I saw a song title, "Naufragio en mi cama:" "Shipwreck in my bed." I learned that word from Alborada! Vocabulary augmentation!!

The guy that Sara, La Poderosa, has sent to spy on the Cuencas people brings his report.

From now on I'm going to call La Poderosa by her real name, Sara, because it's much shorter and doesn't involve italics.

After seeing Gasco talking to his bad dudes, Sara's spy then investigated him. "He is Amilcar Gasca. He's been in Cuencas ten years. One night the Count got into a brawl, Gasco intervened and helped him, and in thanks the Count gave him work. He's a murderer." "And how about Doña Juana?" "She's the one who rules at the Palace. ... She looks good and carries herself well." "Of course. She was lucky not to be there, on the day of that fire... Her son is very handsome and looks much more like her brother (the former Count) than he looks like her husband... Doña Isabel, who lives with them, was always so nice ... I'm tired of living this way ... sometimes I think it would be better to die..."

I post the new update every Wednesday and Saturday morning. All Alborada recaps are now listed in the sidebar to the right - below the small picture of Modesta and Doña Juana, just above the elephant. Click on the numbers (ONE TWO THREE ... ETC) to find them!

Amor Real
Entre el Amor y el Odio

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At 1:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, I searched all over the internet to find out what merequetengue means with little success. So I broke down and called mi suegra. She says it's slang meaning a gossiper or someone who spreads half truths or lies... but she didn't seem to be very sure...

At 3:02 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

melinama: I hope you feel better soon!!! Another great post... thank you for your hard work!!! :)

At 4:06 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, hard to believe you guys are getting all this from the subtitles? That's pretty awesome. I'm completely hooked on the show too. Think I'll order Amor Real just to see Luis more. Ha! My husband loves when I watch it because I get all romantic on him. Well, glad to know you guys are here, just in case I miss an episode, though I doubt it. Asi es, y asi sera. :)

Telu Ramos--
a Lucero wannabe.

At 4:07 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry you're not feeling well, I hope you get better soon.

That's interesting about "fulano", it has the same meaning in Portuguese. "Zé Fulano" is roughly like John Doe. I don't know if "fulana" has a derogatory connotation in Portuguese.

Am I the only one who would really like Santiago and Antonio to get together? They both seem like basically nice guys who could really use a break.

At 8:34 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm so sorry you don't feel well - how very kind to continue to help us in spite of your illness. With no medical degree whatsoever, I advise you to take care of yourself: rest, drink plenty of healthful fluids and think pure thoughts.

(Actually, I don't know about the pure thoughts part; but, my grandmother never soothed a cold or flu without assuring me that pure thoughts were essential to miraculous recoveries. This is the same grandmother who believed that hot water and lemons would cure anything but insanity.)

At 8:35 AM, Blogger melinama said...

Thanks everybody! At least I'm not throwing up any more this morning... I suppose my thoughts are reasonably pure ... thanks for the search on merequetengue! And I agree, Santiago and Antonio both seem like nice guys.

At 8:52 AM, Blogger Jean said...

Glad you are feeling better, Melinama.
If you google "merequetengue," it's all over the web but it's not so easy to figure out what it means - or rather it means lots of things. It is a dance or rhythm related to the merenque and it is a kind of soup. One entry was a definition and said that in popular language it referred to the "goce del acto sexual" or pleasure of the sexual act. In other entries, it seems to mean a big mess or something all confused. That might be how Juana uses it.

At 9:23 AM, Blogger Jean said...

My Spanish teacher - a Mexican woman - agrees with my conclusion that merequetenga means "a big mess"

At 10:24 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I enjoy your recaps almost as much as I enjoy watching the Telenovela.
As things happen, I keep thinking "Can't wait to read what she has to say" and when I read your recap I always crack up with your comments. Question: Is this soap playing around Ft. Walton Beach, Florida? My daughter-in-law lives there and I'd like her to watch it too. Keep up the good work.

At 11:00 AM, Blogger melinama said...

Thanks, anonymous! I don't know about Ft. Walton Beach, but Univision plays almost everywhere!

At 11:44 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi, I'm from Puerto Rico, and here la novela Alborada begins in January 10/06 .Here Alborada is in chapter 6. I love reading the recaps you are doing and then I saw the novela, your are doing and great job. I read someone is confused about Doña Isabel, she was never married, she told Marina in chapter 4, she is the sister of Doña Juana's late husband, and also she said it to Marina that she was in love with Don Carlos(the Count of Guevara, the real father of Don Luis) but he was engaged with another women.

At 12:13 PM, Blogger Jean said...

One more thing about merequetenque - my Spanish teacher says that using it to mean a big mess is very Mexican. Her Spanish, i.e., from Spain, colleagues in the private school where she teaches don't understand it.

When Antonio shoved the vanilla under Gasca's (we've been calling him Gasco but I think it is GascA) nose, I imagined him thinking, "Real men don't sniff vanilla beans!" It's not surprising that Diego's business dealing are unsuccessful with Gasca as his representative. Gasca is the guy you send to make people pay the rent, not schmooze potential business partners.

Finally, I believe that Isabel was married. She is introduced as Dona Isabel Manrique de Leiva, which indicates that she was married to someone named Leiva.

At 1:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love your recaps. Excellent job and very entertaining. I am impressed with the knowledge of Spanish you have acquired from the novelas. As a bilingual person myself, people often ask me how to better their Spanish, and I tell them to watch novelas. If you pay attention you can learn so much. The language is correct and fairly free of regionalisms and slang (except among the comic characters), and they strive to make the accents as "neutral" as possible.
One comment--it is "Gasca," not "Gasco". Gasca is his last name, as mentioned by "La Poderosa" this past week. I cant' for the life of me remember the first name, though she said that too. Oh well, it will come up again.

At 5:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Catalina. I think Gasco's first name is Amilcar or something very similar. But words go across the screen so fast and I always watch it live.
I must admit, I'm quite confused by this exchange above how Santiago and Antonio should "get together." What does this mean- Santiago is also gay? I'm confused.

Melinama. Let me add my name to your list of well-wishers. You have great generosity of spirit to sit and write recaps for us when you are under the weather.
Thanks so much and FEEL all better very soon :) I really look forward to these caps and love the fact that our group seems to be growing--due to PRATIE'S current high position in google search results for" ALBORADA"
(loved your comparison of plantation scene and infomercial!)

At 11:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Re: Is Santiago gay? We have absolutely no idea one way or the other. Statistically, I'd assume he's straight. My comment that he should get together with Antonio is sheer wishful thinking. I'm not holding my breath.

But it's a novela. You never know.

At 11:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We thought our lives had ended when the dreaded words 'ultimos capitulos" began to haunt the nightly "Amor Real" trailers. After "La Mentira", "Enganada", and "Amor Real" we couldn't find anything with enough substance to quench our telenovela addiction. I mean, how interesting is night after night of silicone cleavage, super-straightened razor cut hair, six-pack abs, and clothes that look like they came from one of those mall stors that blare out constant rock music at brain-damaging volume? Eye candy maybe, but we needed something to sink our teeth into. We had just about given up on ever finding another great telenovela, and consequently missed the first episodes of "Alborada". We picked it up just about the time the gang sprang Hipolita from the convent. Can someone catch us up to that point? Now a couple of comments:
1). Chronology: The nightgown-like dresses are obviously Empire (as in Napoleonic), which would place them c. 1805-1820. If memory serves from my study of Mexican history, Father Hidalgo issued the famous cry for independence in 1810. Since the Cuencas folks are starting to get fed up with the Inquisition and the crown's local puppet government, together with the fact that it has (finally) dawned on some of the locals (represented here by Felipe and Luis) that they don't need Spain, they can go it alone, would suggest that the seeds of revolutionary unrest have begun to sprout. This would support our time frame theory.

2). Santiago's hair: This also supports our time frame theory. Felipe observes that Spain is always at war. With whom? Napoleon, of course. Ever seen a portrait of Nappie? Remember that dorkie little combover of his? We had more on this subject but we have run out of space. Would like to finish this thought during our next turn.

At 11:23 PM, Blogger melinama said...

There's no such thing as running out of space! Continue immediately!

As for what's been happening - I've blogged it from the beginning, you can catch up by following my recaps in the right sidebar (look just above the elephant)


At 12:37 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello there. After swearing I would stay away from telenovelas (I'm a TV addict to begin with and the right novela can be sooooo addictive) I caught this when I was visiting mom in South Texas (which borders with Mexico and therefore gets the bulk of the Mexican chanels, more than American ones as a matter of fact) and was dismayed that here at home it's not quite at the same point as in Mexico, but not far enough for me to catch what had happened in the past. Needless to say, I was thrilled to find your blog so I could catch up on all that I've missed and to keep me informed when I miss it. Melinama, thanks for all your hard work and I'll light a velita (candle) for your health. As for "Quiero que lo entregues a la nina," literally would mean "I want you to give him (or it) to the little girl." I guess that could mean the body or perhaps something of value that was taken? If he says: "Quiero que le entregues a la nina," it would then mean "I want you to give him (or her) the child." As was mentioned earlier, Victoria has a daughter, and I suspect that it's actually this child they are speaking of. For this reason, I think it's the later version of this ("le" instead of "lo") and that this is the begining of an explanation of what happened to Victoria's lost daughter. Perhaps the person they gave her to was the Inquisitor? Just a thought. Also, "fulana" simply meant "whoever," kind of like "Jane Doe" in the part of Mexico where I gre up "fulana, sutana, y mengana," so the prostitute reference might be a regionalism. Either way in the context of the soap it means that Esperanza slept with some man of no importance or some random guy. Guess nobody's given Luis the memo that this has Diego written all over it! Take care, and I look forward to reading this awesome blog.

At 10:05 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I happen to catch Alborada while at my cousin's house in Guatemala City and came back looking to see if I could find it here. To my delight, it is on Univision so I could continue to watch it. I was a bit confused when it seemed that some of the episodes were being repeated, out of sequence somehow, until I found your blog and read that "South of the border" they're on a different schedule.

I am very happy to have found your blog both to catch up on the parts that I'd missed and for help with the chronology and characters.

I have never watched a telenovela and my only previous experience with them was as a child when my guardian listened to a radionovela every day--gosh, fifty years ago!! I have never been drawn by bodice-rippers but I'm fascinated by this one--all the richness you don't see in American soap operas and the cultural accents--the devout Catholicism and prayer, etc.

I wanted to contribute a linguistic note: the prefix "requete-" (merequetenque) means 'extremely" like you would say in English, "I am so g--d--- f------- tired of x, y, and z..." I have only heard it in contexts of extreme frustration, anger, etc. "Me-" makes it reflexive. I've never heard this particular idiom but I'd wager that's part of the construction of the word.

As for the chronology, I'm a professor of Latin American history and I think that they take liberties with the historical background. As someone else mentioned, it sounds like it is before independence but the some of the artifacts are late 19th century. I remind myself that it is an entertainment, not a documentary.

Thanks for doing this blog; it is very enlightening.

At 10:41 AM, Blogger melinama said...

Wow, a professor! I better be careful. That's very interesting about "requete" and I love what I'm learning from the comments. I am just a beginner with Spanish, really, I started in 2003 (with "El Amor Y El Odio" and just bumble along the best I can.

The comment area is a good place to keep the dialogue going ... I don't post every night because I don't want my blog to become "all about alborada" and then what would I do when the series ends? but we can chat down here...

At 4:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

These recaps are great. In PR the telenovela is like one week behind but it is very interesting to read your comments and funny descriptions. Hope that you are feeling well!!!!Thanks for these recaps. Giselle

At 12:07 AM, Blogger LuceroWannabe said...

Hi All!

I swore I'd never get sucked into these novelas again, but alas...I am a hopeless romantic.

Question: did anyone else realize that Marina is Victoria's daughter?

Question: did anyone else think that Antonio was looking at Dona Juana with some seriously psycho intense eyes at their first few meetings? I thought maybe he was not gay, but rather was looking for another psycho mother figure. Wouldn't that be sad?

I love seeing everyone's input on certain words. Merequetengue is a very old word..."revolu" is comparable or "fiasco" in English.

Univision has an Alborada site with some really good information on the background, history, and what it's taken to create the show.
Also info on the actors. Carlos Ponce might have a guest appearance later on. :)

Thank you for this wonderful site. I love visiting!

At 12:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To finish our comments regarding Santiago's hairdo, our analysis of which will lend support to our conclusion that the story takes place c. 1810: Back to the Napoleonic era theory--are the producers trying to
a). Pay tribute to the "little general" by trying to emulate his signature style, or
b). Suggest that Santiago regards it as his solemn duty as a true hidalgo to enrich the lives of even the lowliest peasants by exposing them to the latest European coiffure trends (noblesse oblige?), or
c). Is Santiago a visionary who foresees the eventual French occupation and believes it is never too early to start getting on their good side?

While we're having fun with this, will Diego contract an "unmentionable" disease at the bordello and eventually become insane? It's too ironic not to be considered as a possibility.
And what about Modesta? Could Luis, or Diego, (or both for that matter) actually be Modesta's sons from forced liasons with their fathers, and Juana has hidden it all these years? Wait, that won't work--if Luis is the spitting image of his father, how could it possibly have been involuntary on her part?
Thanks for your fabulous recaps and for sharing everyone's comments. Maybe when "Alborada" is over we could all agree to meet
at a central location for a mini-convention or something--you know, like the Star "Trekkies".

At 12:19 AM, Blogger LuceroWannabe said...

Someone had mentioned Dona Isabel's name. Luis' is Luis Manrique y Arellano...isn't hers the same?

BTW, I just googled La Alborada and there are now numerous sites besides this one since this morning! There's an official post area, in Spanish. They're not as analytical as we are. hee hee hee!

At 12:40 AM, Blogger melinama said...

I'm one of the people who "doesn't like to be surprised" so I've looked ahead in the (Spanish language) resumenes on the web and knew that Marina was Victoria's daughter, but I thought mentioning it wouldn't be playing fair to people who DON'T like to look ahead.

I love the comments about Santiago's hair...

About Antonio's intense gazes: I think his part is too small for him so he's trying to enlarge it by over-acting. Which is a bit confusing, it's true.

Did anybody notice that for the first few weeks of the show, Modesta never said a SINGLE WORD? But just shuffled around behind Juana. She obviously knows as much, or more, than anybody else. She seems to go along with all the evil-doings, even suggesting quite a few of them herself, but on the other hand she's the one who provided the "we need to right our wrongs so we don't go to hell" justification for making little Rafael the next Count.

At 4:23 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi all! This may be the wrong forum for this question, but... This is the first time I've heard of a spanish last name seperated by "y". I'm aware of "de" as in, Asunción Díaz Montero de Escobar (although she seems to have three last names which is throwing me too, lol).

At 8:26 AM, Blogger Jean said...

Hi Ruth: Spanish naming convention is very interesting. I'm not an expert so I'm sure someone will correct me if I get it wrong. A man's (and I think an unmarried woman's) last name is the father's name "y" and the mother's name. So Luis' father was Manrique and his mother's name is Arellano so he is Luis Manrique y Arellano. When a woman is married, the "y" and the mother's name goes away and is replaced by "de" and the huband's name. So Isabel is Manrique de Leiva, Juana is Arellano de Manrique (or viuda (widow) de Manrique. Hipólita is Diaz (her mother's maiden name since she was illegitimate) de Guzman. You might have noticed that Rafael was named Manrique y Arellano and I assume that is because the mother was listed as unknown. I don't know where the Montero came from in Asunción's name.

At 10:17 AM, Blogger LuceroWannabe said...

Hello Again,

Melinama...please accept my apology if I offended you. I didn't "go ahead" anywhere in reference to Marina. We tape all the episodes and get caught up on the weekends. In one, Marina was talking to Dona Isabel and had merely mentioned her mother having dark hair and being orphaned. I only assumed and put it out there to see if anyone else had thought the same. In fact, I kinda thought perhaps I was way off since it was just the way I understood it. I'll be careful to phrase my "opinions" definitely wasn't a fact.

At 10:20 AM, Blogger LuceroWannabe said...

Also, thanks for the insight on Antonio..."overacting" may definitely be his thing, pobrecito.
My husband thinks that with the way Modesta is acting (again, only from watching the current episodes) that Modesta is actually Dona Juana's mother. I completely disagree. But, it is very interesting how she's opening up more.

At 11:50 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks njmotmot! That is very interesting... do you know if the naming convention is the same in all spanish speaking countries?

As for Marina... I thought she might be Victoria's daughter when Victoria mentioned she had a daughter. Marina is the only orphan I can think of so it makes "sense."

The one thing about Modesta that stood out was in the scene where Isabel comes to talk with Juana about keeping Hipólia from leaving Modesta speaks up without being spoken to directly. Since Modesta is a "servant" I would have thought that was out of line.

At 1:22 PM, Blogger Jean said...

Ruth: Check out the article, "Iberian Naming Customs" in Wikipedia for a very complete discussion of this.

At 2:06 PM, Blogger melinama said...

Hi -
Lucerowannabe, I'm totally not offended! I was just explaining why *I* don't go on ahead ... I think it's totally fine, don't worry.

I think Modesta is supposed to be at least part Indian and I'm sure Doña Juana is not! I think it's possible Modesta will take some matter into her own hands at some point, or provide some crucial plot point, but at the moment I think she's like the Greek chorus in the witnessing part of their gig.

At 7:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the link njmotmot! Very interesting... all I can say is that a lot of people must have had a lot at stake (maybe pride?) to have such an array of naming conventions. Seems like they were trying to make everyone happy.

At 1:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm afraid the people at Caray are not doing a very good job. They seem to have no commitment to their public. For instance, the Monday Cristina show when it was not translated for those of us who are not that knowledgeable in Spanish. We were counting on them! If they can say, "oh, I had a guest and couldn't interrupt her by turning on the TV"-- or "Oh, I missed that," and can't tell us anything, what good is this blog? I certainly miss the good job you did in giving the updates on Alborada. I miss it terribly.

At 3:25 PM, Blogger melinama said...

Hi, Anonymous,

Are you aware that we are all people with jobs, and that we do what we do just for the joy of it? Are you paying us? What do you think we owe you? The woman who is working on recapping that episode also has a job. There was a lot of talking that night and the recapping is hard. There's no reason why we can't just pull the plug on the whole enterprise at any moment. Have a heart. You can see I am offended, on that recapper's account, by your complaint.

At 12:07 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

whatever happened to the bloggers for Barrera de Amor? You're leaving us out in the dark here.

At 12:10 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

When you say you are going to blog one of the telenovelas, you attract an audience, people who speak little spanish and want to learn more. You can't just say, well, I'm tired of this story. I'm going to stop in the middle and blog another one. I don't care how offended you are. We are offended even more!


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