I’ve always been somewhat of a talker.
I guess I had to be. I was new to a country with 46.77 million inhabitants. In a continent, where I was one of 742.5 million. All I really had to do was say hola for people to vomit words in my direction. Strangers are instinctly curious. Especially once everyone figured out I spoke English. Latina, pero como hablas ingles y español?
I lived in #Spain for about a year after turning 27. It was my first time setting foot in #Europe. Up until now, everyone in my family had moved to a new country for economic or political reasons. Their moves were permanent. Mine had a valid U.S. passport. A few days before the big move, I shared my hesitation with my cousin who reminded me that in the worst case scenario, I could always come home. She assured me that I’d be so busy with the master’s program that I’d forget about the time. She spoke with experience. She managed to keep herself busy for 10 years before going back home to #Peru.
Spain was everything I thought it’d be. Siestas, old people, siestas, jamón. My first week there, I thought I could use my siesta hours to go grocery shopping, but they siesta too. All my well-traveled friends warned me to not speak English in public. Everyone hates Americans, all of them told me. Okay, everyone hates Americans, I told myself.
But what does an American look like?