Pandereta means “tambourine” of the sort my children used to carry when dressed in their traditional costumes in our village fiestas. They would chant the local folk songs and bang on the “panderetas” with strident voices. A while ago I heard the expression: “España es un país de pandereta” spoken by someone on a radio phone-in programme.
The gentleman concerned was a pensioner who said that a few days previously his pensioners club had been raided by police for playing “illegal” bingo. Each pensioner had paid 10 cents per card and there was a kitty of 22 euros. The police confiscated the bingo set and kitty, and took the names and identity numbers of all the pensioners. I can just imagine the scene, can’t you?
His conclusion to the story was to complain that Spain is “un país de pandereta” – in other words a country not to be taken seriously on the international stage, or words to that effect!