As July 4th is approaching and many friends, family, and fellow citizens back home prepare to celebrate all things “American,” I decided to take a few minutes to comment on some of the political differences I’ve noted here. First and foremost, I can’t hide. For one reason or another I am blatantly American to Spaniards and they never fail to recognize that quite quickly. This often leads them to trying to speak to me in English (although unnecessary) or starting a conversation about America and all that it entails. Through some of these conversations, it is quite evident that our nation is at the forefront of all media, and most of the citizens here care in some way, it is not just a tabloid. For example, when a US congressman was shot, my Spanish coworker got a news notification before I did and proceeded to ask “what is going on over there?” I quickly responded with a rather vague answer saying I really didn’t, know, but we definitely have had some problems. In another instance I opened up a local newspaper just to browse and read something different. Only to find that the first several pages were US or US involved headlines concerning President Trump, our military’s actions or something of the like. Again, I couldn’t help but think for a minute, “all eyes really are on us.”
While that is the world that we live in on a daily basis, it is enlightening to see and experience that there are other things to focus on. It seems to me that Spaniards would much rather talk about their families, friends, plans, and factions than the day-in day-out political drama, and that is quite refreshing. So as I conclude this blog I will say that although it is hard to escape the media and our current political climate, it is possible to live a life without the daily burden of worrying about what will be on the front page because evidently the Spanish have figured it out.