To the Spaniards, a siesta is as commonplace as apple pie is to Americans. But could the daily routine of an afternoon siesta be on the brink of extinction?
According to this article on NBC News, Spain’s Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy announced a plan to eliminate the siesta from the Spanish work day. This means that businesses will no longer be closed for a few hours in the afternoon, which time most people use to run errands, eat, pick up their kids from school, or actually nap.
For seven decades the Spanish workday was split into the morning hours, usually from 8am until 1:30pm, and the late afternoon/evening hours, usually from 5pm until 8pm, mostly to avoid the peak hours of heat. But with Rajoy’s plan, instead of a long workday with a siesta in between, Spaniards would have a standard workday, which he hopes will end at 6pm.
Many Spaniards are saddened by the possibility of this change, as they believe the siesta is a part of their culture and gives the traditional Spanish workday a certain “rhythm.” Most tourists, on the other hand, might welcome the change as finding an open restaurant or shop during these hours can be tricky.
Whatever the future holds for the siesta in Spain, one thing’s for certain, the beloved tradition of napping will continue to live on for many of us throughout the world.