Postcards from Malaga

May 29, 2012 in Comment, General

© Andrew Birch

Andrew Birch writes:

This is my first blog about being a British cartoonist living abroad, in Malaga, Southern Spain. My first blog ever, in fact. Matt Buck suggested the title. This has a pleasing symmetry, as I started working for the Spanish press with a series called Postales de Malaga – Postcards from Malaga – in which a naive and rather foolish Englishman (me) writes a series of cards to his doting mother in England, telling her of his adopted city, and misunderstanding everything.

I got the job in a typically Spanish way, being invited to a bar by a writer friend “to meet some journalists who are starting a new paper.” I went along, got drunk with some friendly new people, and at the end of the evening the editor asked me to be a contributor. This was presumably based on my boozing ability, as he hadn’t even seen my work. When I realised that he wanted a daily cartoon I was panic-stricken, but jumped in at the deep end. It was, surprisingly, a great success. All the doors closed to me as no more than a long-staying tourist opened, and I was accepted as an honorary Malagueño. When I eventually ran out of ideas, I changed the strip into a political one, commenting on local and national  (Spanish) news. It ran for five years, until I was sacked for not heeding several warnings to lay off the Mayor.

Here’s the first cartoon published. I’m dressed as a horse-rider at the yearly fair – almost as incongruous as walking through the city centre as a bull-fighter. I’m immediately spotted as a “guiri” – a North European, usually British or German.

In traslation the card says: “Dear Mum, I’ve arrived safely in Malaga. I’m wearing typical Andalucian clothes, to fit in with the locals. Love, Andrew.”

Ed says: In the spirit of the present European unity, Andrew’s postcards will be winging their way to the blog on a regular basis henceforth.


9 responses to Postcards from Malaga

  1. Excellent, Andrew !

  2. Excelente, el Senor Birch! Nos gustaría más, por favor

  3. Me encanta lo que has escrito, Mr Birch.

    Un abrazito,
    Giri en Londres
  4. Gracias, pueblo! (Como decia Evita Peron)

  5. Lovely stuff, Andrew – welcome to the blog team!

  6. Ah, so that’s where you’ve been, Birch. I have some bar bills that need settling.

  7. (gulps)

  8. Soy de Málaga, y me he encontrado con su viñeta en la red. Ciertamente me ha encantado y le felicito por ello. Saludos desde Málaga

  9. Hola Pepa, me alegro que te guste. Saludos.

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