Wednesday, March 28, 2012

A Lively Country

Coming from small towns and city, I don't know a whole lot about the city life in the United States. I experienced living in Washington, D.C.  for two months. I grew up in the Little Rock Metropolitan Area. And I went to university in Jonesboro, Arkansas. And I have lived in a small Spanish city for the past six months.

Huelva is by no means a tiny "pueblo" or village. It probably takes a little over an hour to walk from the east side of town to the west side. And I don't run in to people I know on the streets very often (although if I lived here long enough that would be very likely). The populations is probably around 150,000 people from what I have heard.

But life in a small city here in Spain is much different from life in a small city or town in the United States. I feel like the people are much more lively here. It is much more social. There is a bar that I frequently visit and I have noticed that when people come in they greet the whole bar with a "Buenas." The complete phrase is "Buenas dias," or "Buenas tardes," but they shorten it. It is similar to how we will say, "morning," or "evening" and leave off the good. But instead they just say good. (I really like this when it comes to writing emails; it doesn't matter when someone reads it.) And upon leaving a bar, "Hasta luego," which roughly translates to "see you later."

Even in this small city, midnight is early. Dinner is around, what Americans would call late, 9 p.m. or so. And then people go out after dinner. Many pubs don't even open until midnight or later. And the people still get up and go to work the next day. Well, most of the time. That brings me to something else I have seen a lot of since coming here. Protests.

Even in the larger cities I have lived, I have not seen more than one or two protests. I am sure there were some in D.C. since it is the capital but I don't remember ever witnessing one in Little Rock, much less Jonesboro. But since being in Huelva, for only six months, I have witnessed at least five protests. Most recently, I saw a small group of people protesting outside the local newspaper. And tomorrow is the General Strike (Huelga General) in Spain.

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