Heart of Cádiz. Taxi de la Real. He is Balbino Batista, a taxi driver from Cádiz who drives a taxi through the streets of Cádiz with the Royal Society shield stuck on his rear window and with a stuffed animal (a duckling) also dressed in the colors of the San Sebastian team. It’s taxi 79 from Cádiz. It is easy to recognize, and many Gipuzkoans who travel to the Andalusian town to spend the summer check it and are surprised. “They ask, of course. They are surprised. And I explain to them that I am from Cádiz, from Cádiz and from the Royal Society ”, explains Balbino. A slightly strange mixture that is easy to explain. “I have always belonged to Real, naturally, as others are from Madrid, Barça or Sevilla. I’m from La Real, period ”. But where does that hobby come from in a person born in Cádiz? “I am from the time of the 80s, from when Real won the league titles and were a champion team. I was struck by a nice team and since then I have been very fond of them, I am one more Txuri-urdin fan ”.
But this love of Balbino Batista for Real Sociedad has an important nuance. “Let’s see, let’s see, as a good man from Cádiz, I’m from Cádiz to death. My heart is from Cádiz, and when Cádiz plays at Carranza, I park the taxi and that day there is only my Cádiz. But then there is Real Sociedad, which is also my team and I have a lot of affection. In the car I have the Real coat of arms, on my key ring I also carry another Real coat of arms, and I have a duck with the Real kit. And when he plays he also tried to watch his games, in the taxi with his mobile or I go to a bar. It is also my Real ”. But the Cadista and Txuri-urdin taxi driver will not have a divided heart this Sunday. “Nerd. First my Cádiz. I want him to always win. And then the Real. But if they both needed the points, I would want them to tie, but with a lot of goals, to have a little fun. What happens is that now, since they are both well, I want my Cádiz to win and that the Real continue to be First. I am enjoying a lot with this Imanol team, and with so much quarry that Zubieta has. It is a pride. My last name is Batista, almost like Bautista. I’m almost from the quarry! ”He exclaims with the usual Cadiz sympathy.
Of course, Balbino Batista recognizes that he has had to explain more than once his love for the Real when a client has entered his taxi. “Many are surprised that not being Basque, it is from Real and not from Athletic, which they say is the biggest team in the Basque Country. That comment bothers me, because for me the big one is La Real. When I was little I had coaches from Bilbao who played pranks on me too. But I was going to train with my Real shirt. I have two small children and they both have their Real jersey. We are Cadistas, but also from the Real. And I love that my taxi carries the coat of arms of the Real ”, he says.
Balbino has already traveled to San Sebastián several times to see the Real, thanks to that shield on his taxi. “Carlos Benito (manager and president of several San Sebastian clubs) got into my taxi once he came to Cádiz and was surprised by the details of the Real. We talked about my history, how tired I was that they only talked about Madrid and Barça, and that being from Real and Cádiz was like something different and beautiful at the same time. It was a short journey but we became friends. That Christmas he sent me some Real T-shirts and invited me to go to Anoeta. I went to see the Champions League game against Manchester United. There I walked through Donosti dressed as the Royal and with my Cadiz accent, and people were surprised. How Josu, the manager of a restaurant in the old part (El San Sebastián), I also became friends with. And that’s how my txuri-urdin passion has grown ”. Now Balbino is proud of Cádiz with his taxi from La Real, number 79, which he will park to enjoy this Sunday, finally, after a long time of a Cádiz-Real First division.