Family Affair Friday(ish): Season 3, Episode 21, “Lost in Spain: Part 3,” 2/24/1969

Written by: John McGreevey. Directed by: Charles Barton.

Happy holidays, everyone! This week we come to the end of Family Affair‘s classic three-parter, “Lost in Spain.” It’s not a Christmas episode, but its climactic scenes would have been perfect for one.

We begin with about four minutes of backtracking to remind us where we left off.

As you will recall, it was sorrow in the straw for Buffy and Jody.

As you will recall, it was sorrow in the straw for Buffy and Jody.

They are starting to wonder if Bill will ever find them.

In the morning, they emerge from their hiding place and peer out the barn door for signs of life.

In the morning, they emerge from their hiding place and peer out the barn door for signs of life.

They watch the farmer’s wife as she deposits a bowl of vegetables on a table and returns into the house.

Starving, they run over, grab some food, and haul butt back to the barn before the woman returns.

Starving, they run over, grab some food, and haul butt back to the barn before the woman returns.

Buffy and Jody feel bad about swiping food, but they figure that Uncle Bill can give the farmer some money later.

Their hunger has given them a new appreciation for vegetables, even raw string beans.

Their hunger has given them a new appreciation for vegetables, even raw string beans.

When the farmer enters the barn, they duck behind the haystack again.

He finds a carrot on the ground and gives one of those exaggerated TV shrugs.

He finds a carrot on the ground and gives one of those exaggerated TV shrugs.

Meanwhile, the rest of the Davis clan is standing vigil at the Sitges police station, much to the annoyance of the Sitges police.

The police aren't happy to have them there.

A frustrated Bill can’t even get in to see the captain.

The desk sergeant says they are working on many other equally important cases.

"Dammit, Jim, we're policemen, not miracle-workers!" he says (more or less).

“Dammit, Jim, we’re policemen, not miracle-workers!” he says. (More or less.)

The Civil Guard is making he thorough farm-to-farm search for the kids, he adds.

He's right about that. In fact, they are just pulling up to the Vega farm now.

He’s right about that. In fact, they are just pulling up to the Vega farm now.

Buffy and Jody have been contemplating leaving the farm to search the woods for berries like Hansel and Gretel. Hearing the approaching hoofbeats, they peek outside.

Buffy and Jody may not be the sharpest tools in this shed, but they seem to sense that Generalissimo Franco's Civil Guard is not an entirely benign force.

Buffy and Jody may not be the sharpest tools in this shed, but they seem to sense that Generalissimo Franco’s Guardia Civil is not an entirely benign force.

Maybe what tips them off is the creepy bullfighting music that accompanies the guards’ approach. In any case, they decide to stay hidden.

The guards show the Vegas a picture of the kids and ask if they've seen them.

The guards show the Vegas a picture of the kids and ask if they’ve seen them.

After the guards leave, the Vegas are shaken by the encounter.

Methinks the Guardia Civil have a bit of a PR problem with the local farm-dwellers.

Methinks the Guardia Civil have a bit of a PR problem with the local farm-dwellers.

Carlos reassures his wife that everything is fine–after all, they answered honestly when they denied seeing the children.

Things are about to get more complicated for the Vegas, though.

This is the disturbing sight that confronts Carlos when he goes back into the barn.

This is the disturbing sight that confronts Carlos when he goes back into the barn.

Carlos quickly hauls the kids out of the hay.

After that, he isn't sure what to do with them.

After that, he isn’t sure what to do with them.

Later the kids eat while the adults look on in concern.

Buffy and Jody sense that their presence makes the Vegas uncomfortable.

Buffy and Jody sense that their presence makes the Vegas uncomfortable.

Understandably, however, they are most just happy to be eating.

When Jody asks what kind of soup Mrs. Vega gave them, Buffy replies that it's good soup.

When Jody asks what kind of soup Mrs. Vega gave them, Buffy replies that it’s good soup.

Meanwhile, the Vegas are whispering about what to do.

Carlos has an idea--he wants to send the kids packing.

Carlos has an idea–he wants to send the kids packing.

His wife is more soft-hearted.

His wife is more soft-hearted, however.

Showing that his gruffness is only skin-deep, Carlos gives in and allows his wife to bring the kids back.

Back in Sitges, everyone is still sitting around the police station.

Back in Sitges, everyone is still sitting around the police station when Ricardo enters with a distinguished-looking gentleman.

They are surprised when Ricardo enters with a distinguished-looking gentleman.

They are even more surprised when Ricardo tells them the man is his father, Francisco Torres y Fiero, Spain’s soon-to-be special envoy to the United States.

Ricardo confesses that he lied about his identity because he will be moving with his father to the U.S. soon and wanted to get to know some Americans without them knowing his father is a person of importance.

Ricardo confesses that he lied about his identity because he will be moving with his father to the U.S. soon and wanted to get to know some Americans without them knowing his father is a person of importance.

As secrets go, it’s pretty tame–and convenient–so Cissy and Bill don’t hold a grudge.

Senor Torres y Fiero pledges to help find the twins, and he is influential enough to get Col. Klink off his butt.

Senor Torres y Fiero pledges to help find the twins, and he is influential enough to get Col. Klink off his butt.

Soon, Bill is meeting with an apologetic captain.

The captain fills in on the search and says that civil guard will soon begin re-checking some areas.

The captain fills Bill in on the search and says that civil guard will soon begin re-checking some areas.

Apparently, that includes the Vega farm, where Buffy has been put to work.

Soon hoofbeats and creepy music interrupt the household chores.

Soon hoofbeats and creepy music interrupt the household chores.

The Vegas send the kids back to their hiding place.

After getting rid of the civil guard again, the Vegas ponder their next move.

After getting rid of the civil guard again, they ponder their next move.

In Sitges, a quiet moment finds French remarking that most employers would have fired him by now.

Bill reassures him that the kids could have as easily disappeared under his watch, or Cissy's.

Bill reassures him that the kids could have as easily disappeared under his watch, or Cissy’s.

Ana tries to get Bill to eat some fish and chips.

The Spanish have a saying, she tells him: "Sorrows are better with bread."

The Spanish have a saying, she tells him: “Sorrows are easier with bread.”

That seems a little glib under the circumstances, but she soon redeems herself by having an amazing brainstorm.

What if, instead of sitting around the police station, they actually went out looking for the children?

What if, instead of sitting around the police station, they actually went out looking for the children?

This being a sitcom, Uncle Bill is clearly thinking, "It's kind of crazy, but it just might work."

This being a sitcom, Uncle Bill is clearly thinking, “It’s kind of crazy, but it just might work.”

As Anna and Bill take off to re-trace the bus route, night is falling and the Vegas are realizing that Buffy and Jody have to go.

Maria thinks they can trust the priest, but Carlos won't trust anyone.

Maria thinks they can trust the local priest, but Carlos won’t trust anyone.

Thinking of the priest does give Carlos an idea, though.

Each carrying a twin, they head off into the night.

Each carrying a twin, they head off into the night.

They deposit the still-sleeping kids on pews at the church.

Fortunately, Bill and Anna soon arrive at that church.

Fortunately, Bill and Ana soon arrive at that church.

When they come upon the sacristan, Ana asks him if he’s seen the kids.

I like the authentically Catholic touches in these scenes, such as the way the Vegas genuflect when entering and leaving the church and the way Ana covers her head before entering it.

I like the authentically Catholic touches in these scenes, such as the way the Vegas genuflect when entering and leaving the church and the way Ana covers her head before entering it.

The sacristan hasn’t seen the twins, so a dejected Bill and Ana turn to leave.

Fortunately, Bill glances to his right and sees the children's sleeping forms.

Fortunately, Bill glances to his right and sees the children’s sleeping forms.

When they awaken, the kids are thrilled to see their uncle.

It's a Christmas miracle! Or at least a February sweeps miracle!

It’s a Christmas miracle! Or at least a February sweeps miracle!

The kids say they knew that Uncle Bill would find them.

Jody does wonder why it took so long, though.

Jody does wonder why it took so long, though.

You can tell the kids have had a rough time because Buffy's pigtails are mussed. I wonder how long she would have to be lost before she actually took the barrettes out.

You can tell the kids have had a rough time because Buffy’s pigtails are mussed. I wonder how long she would have to be lost before she actually took the barrettes out.

Anna Novarro shows some nice emotion in this reunion scene. It almost makes me wish Ana could join the Davis family permanently.

It’s not to be, however–when we next see the Davis family, they are back in New York, and French is fielding calls from Bill’s female admirers.

"A little bit of ??? in my life, a little bit of ??? by my side..."

“A little Miss Atwater in my life, a little Miss Ellis by my side…”

The kids are back in school, telling their teacher and peers what they learned in Spain. Jody learned what is probably the best lesson–not to get on a bus ahead of Mr. French. The kids also learned that while people in other countries may talk differently, they are not that different deep down.

And that’s a nice message to carry us through the holiday season.

French's horizons have been broadened, too--the dinner he has prepared for the family includes churros.

French’s horizons have been broadened, too–the dinner he has prepared for the family includes churros.

See you in 2015!

Commentary

From a kid’s perspective, this three-parter was gripping and memorable. Getting lost and having to get by on your own is both a terrifying and rather exciting idea when you’re young. It’s appropriate that Buffy and Jody talk about Hansel and Gretel because this story taps into some of the same primal emotions as fairy tales.

Watching now, I do find the adults’ reactions to the situation a bit flat. Separation and loss have always been big issues on this show, so I would expect to see Bill and Cissy looking more frantic. From the director’s perspective, I’m sure it was preferable to confine everyone to a single set as much as possible, but such inaction doesn’t ring true from a man like Bill. (Contrast it, for example, with Mike and Carol Brady searching the Grand Canyon for their missing offspring: “Bobby! Cindy!”)

Too much restraint is better than over-acting, though, and I doubt the adults’ reactions detracted from the suspense young audience members felt watching these episodes or that satisfaction they took in the final reunion.

Continuity Notes

The twins mention their teacher, Miss Cummings.

Guest Cast

Francisco Torres y Fiero: George J. Lewis. Ana Vicente Casona: Anna Navarro. Carlos Vega: Nacho Galindo. Tio Dichoso: Jay Novello. Maria Vega: Rosa Turich. Lt. Playa: Valentin de Vargas. Sacristan: Julian Rivero. Ricardo: Johnny Aladdin. Captain: Tom Hernandez. Sergeant: Jose Haas.

Valentin de Vargas, who died last year, had roles in some well known movies, including Touch of Evil, Hatari, and The Magnificent Seven.

George J. Lewis’ most memorable role was probably his appearance as Don Alejandro in Walt Disney’s Zorro series. His work in films as a bit player, often uncredited, was prodigious–in 1944 alone, he appeared in approximately 20 films.

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Family Affair Friday: Season 3, Episode 20, “Lost in Spain, Part 2,” 2/17/1969

Written by: John McGreevey. Directed by: Charles Barton.

We start this episode with a brief review of previous events, which culminate with Buffy and Jody alone on a bus in Spain.

Yikes.

Yikes.

Mr. French is desperately trying to explain the situation to a woman at the bus station, but the language barrier interferes.

He's relieved to see a familiar face, Tio Dichoso, but he soon learns once again that Tio Dichoso's grasp of English is quite limited.

He’s relieved to see a familiar face, Tio Dichoso, but he realizes once again that Tio Dichoso’s grasp of English is quite limited.

Sensing French’s alarm, Dichoso hurries off to find an English-speaking friend.

Meanwhile, when the bus stops to admit a passenger, Buffy and Jody try to get assistance from the bus driver.

Meanwhile, when the bus stops to admit a passenger, Buffy and Jody try to get assistance from the driver.

He can’t speak their language, but his irritation comes through loud and clear.

The dejected twins return to their seat.

The dejected twins return to their seat.

This shot features some nice shaky camera work, which conveys both the motion of the bus and helplessness the kids feel.

Blissfully unaware of all that is happening, Bill is enjoying a Sunday afternoon with his Spanish senorita, Ana.

Blissfully unaware of all that is happening, Bill is enjoying a Sunday afternoon with his Spanish senorita, Ana.

She’s taken him to her favorite place in Barcelona, a market area where gypsies recite sappy love poetry.

Bill's Spanish comprehension is impressive--he can correctly translate such words as "murmur" and "flame" in the poem.

Bill’s Spanish comprehension is impressive–he can correctly translate such words as “murmur” and “flame.”

He says the poem–which ends with, “Love is a tear”–is very said.

Ana laughs, saying it's "very Spanish."

Laughing, Ana replies that it’s “very Spanish.”

Cissy’s also off having fun with a new love interest.

She's excited to see that this youth hangout is just like ones at home.

She’s excited to see that this youth hangout is just like ones at home.

Ricardo sees some friends but declines to join them, even though Cissy says talking with his friends would help her improve her Spanish.

Talking with his friends would also probably reveal the secret Ricardo has been keeping.

Of course, talking with his friends would also probably reveal the secret Ricardo has been keeping.

When the twins’ bus reaches Sitges, they disembark.

The driver demands their tickets and can't understand their explanation that Mr. French has the tickets.

The driver demands their tickets and can’t understand their explanation that Mr. French has them.

Instead of showing any concern for these kids, who are alone and clearly out of place, the angry driver stalks off.

Back in the marketplace, Bill is buying flowers for the "senorita hermosa."

Back in the marketplace, Bill is buying flowers for the “senorita hermosa.”

The flower seller wishes him good luck. When Ana translates the sentiment, Bill says he understood it.

Come on, Ana, he knows “murmur” and “flame”–don’t patronize him!

In the cafe, Ricardo is introducing Cissy to churros, which she soon realizes are similar to doughnuts.

Ricardo says dunking them is mandatory--"a king set the fashion."

Ricardo says dunking them is mandatory–“a king set the fashion.”

I’ve read several articles on the history of churros and haven’t come upon a reference to this. Can anyone shed any light?

Meanwhile, Buffy and Jody come upon a nun with a friendly face and hope that she can help them.

Meanwhile, Buffy and Jody see a nun with a friendly face and hope that she can help them.

She’s apparently supervising a school trip, and Buffy and Jody get swept up with the other children. Soon they are on another bus.

Realizing that the nun doesn’t speak English, Buffy says they’d better get off the before it takes them someplace else.

“It looks like we’re already someplace else,” Jody sighs.

When the bus stops, they try to get off, but this driver can't communicate with them, either.

When they try to get off, the uncomprehending bus driver orders them to their seats.

Back in San Juan, French is relieved when Tio Dichoso’s bilingual friend arrives.

French is relieved when Tio Dichoso arrives with his bilingual friend, who calls the Sitges station and learns the bus just arrived.

The interpreter calls the Sitges station and learns the twins’ bus is there.

The driver remembers the kids, but when he and the station manager look for them, they come up empty-handed.

The driver remembers the kids, but when he and the station manager look for them, they come up empty-handed--except for the twins' picnic basket.

The belongings they left on the bus are the only trace of Buffy and Jody.

The translator breaks this alarming news to French, who insists on going to search for them himself.

“Don’t you understand?” he cries. “The children were in my charge. Mr. Davis entrusted me with their care.”

The translator breaks this alarming news to French, who insists on going to search for them himself.

It will be three hours before another bus leaves for Sitges, so the translator offers to drive French.

When we next see Buffy and Jody, some time has passed.

It's growing dark, and they have fallen asleep.

It’s growing dark, and they have fallen asleep.

When they wake up, the driver has stepped away from the bus and left them alone.

Having no idea where they are, the twins get off the bus and look for help.

Having no idea where they are, the twins get off the bus and look for help.

They try knocking on the door of a nearby building but don’t get an answer.

"I don't like this place," a nervous Buffy tells her brother. "It's too, too...you know?"

“I don’t like this place,” a nervous Buffy tells her brother. “It’s too, too…you know?”

Too much like a studio lot, maybe?

The twins decided to walk on.

The twins decide to walk on.

I guess no one ever told them that when you’re lost it’s better to stay in one place.

Back in Barcelona, Bill and Ana return from their date to find Cissy and French looking grim.

Back in Barcelona, Bill and Ana return from their date to find Cissy and French looking grim.

Cissy breaks the news that the twins are lost, and Bill is alarmed to learn that it’s been nine hours since the Sitges bus took them away.

A fearful and remorseful French says they have been the worst nine hours of his life.

A fearful and remorseful French says these have been the worst nine hours of his life.

He adds that the area around the Sitges station has been searched thoroughly.

(This scene is confusing. French does not mention that he went to Sitges himself to look for the kids. He must have done so, though, because he now has the picnic basket they left on the bus.)

A shaken Bill decides that they should notify the Barcelona police, and Ana makes the call for him.

A shaken Bill decides that they should notify the Barcelona police, and Ana makes the call for him.

As night falls, Buffy and Jody are getting tired, hungry, and even more scared.

As night falls, Buffy and Jody are getting tired, hungry, and even more scared.

When they come upon a church, they hope that perhaps a minister is inside.

“Ministers help people,” Buffy notes.

Jody rings a bell, but no one answers.

Jody rings a bell, but no one answers.

The twins decide to enter the church anyway.

VTS_01_3.VOB_000085470

Looking around, they see no one at first.

Then they see something that terrifies them…

It seems that nothing in their church-going experiences has prepared them for the sight of this hooded figure approaching.

…a hooded figure approaching.

I don’t blame them–I’d be scared, too.

I'd be scared, too.

As the figure comes closer, their eyes grow wider.

They they take off running at quite a clip.

Then they take off running at quite a clip.

Eventually, they stop and determine that “it” isn’t following them. When Buffy asks what “it” is, Jody says he thinks it’s “something there aren’t any of.”

Unfortunately, they miss seeing that the apparition is just a man, who might have been able to help them.

Unfortunately, they miss seeing that the apparition is just a man, who might have been able to help them.

Buffy and Jody keep walking, inadvertently making their trail harder and harder for would-be rescuers to follow.

Meanwhile, an officer from the Barcelona police has shown up at Bill's place.

Meanwhile, an officer from the Barcelona police has shown up at Bill’s place.

On the plus side, this guy can speak English. On the minus side, he’s really annoying.

He discourages Bill from going to look for the kids, saying that he should leave the matter to professionals.

He discourages Bill from going to look for the kids, saying that he should leave the matter to professionals.

He cheerfully notes that lost children are not uncommon, and that a family in the countryside is probably caring for the kids and keeping them safe.

Bill tries to emphasize the situation’s urgency–these kids are only seven years old and can’t speak the language.

Geez, they’re still seven? They were six two and half years ago!

Never has one of Bill's head rubs signaled such worry and frustration.

Never has Bill had better cause for one of his head rubs.

In the countryside, Buffy and Jody’s travels bring them to a farm.

Buffy and Jody's travels bring them to a farm.

In an awkward bit of dialog, Jody recognizes a structure as a barn because he has seen a picture of one in his geography book.

Looking inside, they discover that the barn has an occupant.

Buffy wonders if cows hurt people, but Jody tells her she is thinking of bulls.

Buffy wonders if cows hurt people, but Jody tells her she is thinking of bulls.

Jody finds a place for them to sleep and tries to reassure that the barn probably only seems spooky at night.

Jody finds a place for them to sleep and tries to reassure his sister that the barn probably only seems spooky at night.

They are both sure that Uncle Bill will find them in the morning.

They day's events have left them wary enough that they hide themselves under the hay before going to sleep.

They day’s events have left them wary enough that they hide themselves under the hay before going to sleep.

When dawn breaks, the farmer’s wife enters the barn to milk the cow.

She doesn't notice the kids, who get up as soon as she leaves.

She doesn’t notice the kids, who get up as soon as she leaves.

Hungry and thirsty, they hope to get milk from the cow, but Jody doesn't know 'how to turn it on."

Hungry and thirsty, they hope to get milk from the cow, but Jody doesn’t know ‘how to turn it on.”

When they hear someone coming, the twins scurry back to their hiding place.

It's the farmer, who only stays for a minute.

It’s the farmer, who only stays for a minute.

When he leaves, it becomes clear that Buffy is at the end of her rope.

Sobbing, she wonders what will happen if Bill never finds them.

Sobbing, she wonders what will happen if Bill never finds them.

As the episode closes, Jody tries to comfort his sister.

Awww...

Awww…

I’ll offer commentary on this whole three-parter when I blog about Part 3. Look for that installment on Tuesday!

Guest Cast

Bus Driver: Rico Alaniz. Reader: Socrates Ballis. Carlos Vega: Nacho Galindo. Bus Driver: Gilberto Galvani. Senor Las Casas: Ruben Moreno. Ana Vicente Cassona: Anna Navarro. Tio Dichoso: Jay Novello. Sacristan: Julian Rivero. Station Manager: Ben Romer. Nun: Lenore Stevens. Maria Vega: Rosa Turich. Ricardo: Johnny Aladdin.

Whew–that’s a big cast. Most of these performers made their livings playing Hispanic bit parts in movies and television, especially in Westerns.

Ruben Moreno’s most visible film role was as Dustin Hoffman’s father in Little Big Man. He worked as a director and screenwriter as well an actor and is especially well remembered as an acting coach. A former student has set up a Facebook tribute page. Some sources say Moreno was a two-time Academy Award nominee, but I am unable to verify that in the official Academy Award database.

Lenore Stevens was once married to actor Richard Mulligan.

Family Affair Friday(ish): Season 3, Episode 19, “Lost in Spain: Part 1,” 2/10/1969

Sorry for my recent hiatus from posting. To make up for it, I hereby promise to get all three “Lost in Spain” episode summaries posted by Christmas. Some of them might even be posted on Fridays!

Written by: John McGreevey. Directed by: Charles Barton.

We open this week in the Davis living room, where Cissy is dealing with a major problem.

 

She has lost her loose-leaf notebook.

She has lost her loose-leaf notebook.

Uncle Bill tells her not to worry about it since a new semester is starting. The kids have been on a long holiday break, during which they apparently visited Connecticut.

Jody wants to take this hornets nest that he found on vacation to school.

Jody wants to take this hornets’ nest from Connecticut to school.

Bill quickly puts the kibosh on that plan, and French leads the kids in what he describes as a post-holiday ritual.

He makes them line up and parade out the door. I don't blame Cissy for rolling her eyes.

He makes them line up and parade out the door. I don’t blame Cissy for rolling her eyes.

Bill heads to work, where some potential clients coax him to take on a challenging project.

They praise the work Bill's firm did on an aqueduct in Iran and a dam in Pakistan.

They praise the work Bill’s firm did on an aqueduct in Iran and a dam in Pakistan.

The new project would require going to Spain for at least three months, and Bill is reluctant to leave the kids.

The would-be clients seem taken aback that an unmarried man has kids.

The would-be clients seem taken aback that an unmarried man has kids, so Bill has to give a quick summary of the family back-story.

The Spanish businessmen ask if Bill would take the project if they could find a way to keep the family together while it’s under way. He agrees, and they seal the deal with a handshake.

At home that evening, the kids are bubbling with news about school.

Not surprisingly, Cissy is bubbling the most.

Not surprisingly, Cissy is bubbling the most.

She has been named to the school paper staff. There’s also a new boy named Ken Dawson in her class. “Alphabetically, he can’t ignore me,” Miss Davis enthuses.

The conversation's tone changes dramatically when Bill announces that a new project might require spending three months in Barcelona.

The conversation’s tone changes dramatically when Bill announces that a new project requires spending three months in Barcelona.

The kids are sad at the thought of Bill leaving, but they understand that he should take the job if it’s an important one.

“A man has to do his job,” Jody notes.

Bill surprises them with the news that they will be accompanying him to Spain.

French is pleased to be included in the trip, but the thought of closing up the apartment and preparing for everyone's departure in one week sends him into near-hysterics.

French is pleased to be included in the trip, but the thought of closing up the apartment and preparing for everyone’s departure in one week sends him into near-hysterics.

Bill doesn’t take this dither too seriously. “It will be a big adventure for you,” he tells French in an amusingly off-hand way.

 

We next see the family arriving at the swank digs Bill's clients have secured for the family.

We next see the family arriving at the swank digs Bill’s clients have secured for the family.

French praises the house as “attractive in the Spanish manner,” and Buffy and Jody like the courtyard.

When they see the fountain, they regret not bringing their fish to live in it.

When they see the fountain, they regret not bringing their fish to live in it.

I thought the Davis family had given up on fish.

While French scurries off to the kitchen to examine the “culinary devices,” the other family members meet the tutor Bill’s clients have engaged for the kids.

Oh, dear--she's pretty. I know how Bill will be spending his non-working hours in Spain.

Oh, dear–she’s pretty. I know how Bill will be spending his non-working hours in Spain.

Soon, Buffy and Jody are betraying signs of sleepiness.

They resist taking a nap, but Ana tells them that everyone in Spain takes an afternoon siesta.

They resist taking a nap, but Ana tells them that everyone in Spain takes an afternoon siesta.

The idea of a siesta appeals to them. “It’s naps we don’t like,” Jody explains.

After they rest, the kids accompany French to an outdoor food market.

After they rest, the kids accompany French to an outdoor food market.

French wants to purchase a standing rib of beef (lean, but not too lean). He soon makes a shocking discovery, however–people in Spain speak Spanish!

The saleslady can't understand a word he says.

The saleslady can’t understand a word he says.

“It’s incredible!” French gasps.

Those annoying foreigners, always speaking their own languages in their own countries.

These annoying foreigners, always speaking their own languages in their own countries.

She runs off to get her husband, who greets French in English.

"What a joy to hear English spoken again," French sighs.

“What a joy to hear English spoken again,” French sighs.

(I’m glad French is British, so we don’t have to claim him as an ugly American.)

As it turns out, “Good afternoon, sir,” is the limit of the male clerk’s English. Giving up on the beef, French points to the lobsters in front of him.

“Cuantas?” the clerk asks, leaving French at a total loss again.

(Good grief, French, it even sounds like quantity! And what would he be asking you at this point in the transaction?)

Even “uno, dos, tres,” doesn’t ring any bells for French, until the man repeats the words while holding up the appropriate number of fingers.

French manages to obtain four lobsters, but the prospect of going through this each day daunts him.

“One will go completely crackers,” he groans. (Maybe one should have picked up a Spanish phrase book before one left New York.)

Later, Bill requests coffee, but French hasn't managed to acquire any.

Later, Bill requests coffee, but French hasn’t managed to acquire any.

He has, however, brought tea from New York.

“One is entitled to a few creature comforts when stationed in an alien land,” French tells an amused Bill.

When French leaves, Cissy tries to find out if Bill finds Ana attractive.

When French leaves, Cissy tries to find out if Bill finds Ana attractive.

(As if there is any doubt.)

Bill’s not the only one turning on the irresistible Davis charm in Spain, though.

Just then, a delivery man arrives at the door with flowers for Senorita Davis.

Just then, a delivery man arrives at the door with flowers for Senorita Davis.

He says they are from a secret admirer, and he insists on handing them directly to Cissy.

She's delighted, of course, but Bill wonders why the delivery guy is hanging around for so long.

She’s delighted, of course, but Bill wonders why Ricardo is hanging around for so long.

Ricardo says that the Davis family should have a guide to show them around Barcelona.

“If I ever need one, I guess I can get one,” replies Bill, who is full of dismissive quips this week.

Ricardo offers his services, though he dodges a question about his experience. He’s lived in Barcelona his whole life, he says, and he can show them the Museum of Fine Art, the Archaeology Museum, the Picasso Gallery, the zoo, the aquarium, the Passeig de Gracia for shopping, Montserrat, and more.

(This is making me want to go to Barcelona.)

Bill, who has figured out that Ricardo is Cissy’s “secret admirer,” agrees that the pair can do some sight-seeing–as long as Bill goes with them.

Neither Bill nor Cissy seems to notice how much trouble Ricardo has supplying his last name when they ask.

Hmm...I think we've got a little mystery developing here.

Hmm…I think we’ve got a little mystery developing here.

After Ricardo leaves, Cissy gushes about how good looking her suitor is.

The scent of romance in the air apparently inspires Bill to make his move on the kids' tutor.

The scent of romance in the air soon inspires Bill to make his move on the kids’ tutor.

He asks if she can help him brush up on his Spanish.

This tutoring session will take place Sunday over dinner.

This tutoring session will take place Sunday over dinner.

As she is heading out the door, Ana runs into Ricardo.

She recognizes him and knows that the last name he gave the Davises is false.

She recognizes him and knows the last name he gave the Davises is false.

He assures her that he has a good reason for lying and secures her promise to keep his secret.

Soon, Cissy and Bill are off touring with Ricardo.

Soon, Cissy and Bill are off touring with Ricardo.

As they visit a museum and a cathedral, Ricardo recites facts that he’s obviously memorized.

A group with an official tour guide follows them from place to place, reciting the same language.

An official tour guide follows them from place to place, reciting the same language to her group.

It's all rather awkward.

It’s all rather awkward.

Over lunch, Cissy asks if all the guides learn from same tour book. Ricardo admits that it seems to be true.

Bill, in dismissive mode again, notes that the book was printed in New York.

Bill, in dismissive mode again, notes that the book was printed in New York.

Ricardo wants them to give him another chance as a tour guide on Sunday. Bill will be busy with Ana, but he gives Cissy permission to go without him.

On Sunday morning, as Bill and Cissy lounge around before their dates, French prepares to take the twins on an outing.

On Sunday morning, as Bill and Cissy lounge around before their dates, French prepares to take the twins on an outing.

They are going to the beach at Sitges, which is about an hour’s bus ride away.

(I guess a plaid suit is French’s version of cabana-wear.)

Ana and Ricardo show up at the same time.

Ana and Ricardo show up at the same time, and Ricardo makes sure that he and Cissy will be heading in the opposite direction from the older couple.

As Bill and Ana prepare to leave, he notes that the twins are in capable hands with French.

He wouldn't be so calm if he knew what was really happening.

He wouldn’t be so calm if he knew what was really happening.

The trip to Sitges requires a bus change, and Buffy forgets Mrs. Beasley on the first bus.

French tells the kids to get on the Sitges bus while he runs back to get the doll.

French tells the kids to get on the Sitges bus while he runs back to get the doll.

Uh-oh.

Before he can get back to the Sitges bus, it takes off with the kids inside.

Before he can get back to the Sitges bus, it takes off with the kids inside.

His inability to speak any Spanish makes it hard for him to explain his problem to anyone at the bus station.

I wonder what this lady makes of a portly English gentleman waving a creepy-looking doll around.

I wonder what this lady makes of a portly English gentleman waving a creepy-looking doll around.

We end this episode in suspense about the twins’ fate.

And we see the episode title on screen--that's a rarity.

Continuity Notes

Bill mentions his brother. Jody mentions his friend Pete. We also get several references to Jody’s penchant for pet turtles.

Guest Cast

Tio Dichoso: Jay Novello. Senor Cabra: Roberto Iglesias. Ana Vicente Cassona: Anna Navarro. Senor Valgo: Alberto Morin. Clerk: Tina Menard. Girl Guide: Maria Grimm. Bus Driver: Saverio LoMedico. Ricardo: Johnny Aladdin.

Anna Navarro gets special billing here, but her career of TV appearances and small film roles (including one in Alfred Hitchcock’s Topaz) is similar to that of many other Family Affair guest actors. One of her more notable TV distinctions is that she played Ponch’s mother on CHIPs. Navarro’s real-life daughter has written a nice remembrance about her.

Jay Novello’s long television career included a recurring role as Mayor Lugatto on McHale’s Navy, as well as several appearances on I Love Lucy and The Lucy Show.

Maria Grimm really got around the Don Fedderson shows. In addition to this Family Affair appearance, she showed up on My Three Sons, To Rome, With Love, and The Smith Family. In the 1970s, she appeared on Villa Alegre, a bilingual kids show on PBS.

Johnny Aladdin--as mysterious as the character he plays in this episode.

Johnny Aladdin–as mysterious as the character he plays in this episode.

I haven’t been able to find out anything about the Johnny Aladdin who appeared in this episode. Online sources seem to mix him up with either a musician born in 1914 or a magician born in 1919. Neither identity seems likely, unless he was very well preserved in 1969. Johnny Aladdin, actor, did appear in the memorable Dragnet episode “The LSD Story”–he played the artist eating paint off his paintbrush.

Saverio LoMedico’s previous Family Affair appearance came in another episode about the twins getting lost.