I’m sitting on a cream narrow red tiled balcony in Calella, Spain. The road ahead is typically Catalonian with tall multi coloured flat roofed buildings. Birds fly from one balcony to another looking for scraps of croissants. Some palm like trees tower over the occasional pedestrian and the familiar European sound of a moped with an enviable looking women riding confidently in shorts, large sunglasses and a red helmet scurries by towards the beach.
Yesterday we took a trip into Barcelona as my nephew wanted to visit his hero’s football stadium, Nou Camp. There were no seats on the hour long journey. I stood next to a blonde couple with their blonde child and took in the view from the far left window. I saw brave joggers; graffitied walls, confident nudist bathers, paragliders, teenagers playing volleyball, families picnicking, young girls performing handstands, a woman nursing her tiny new baby, shopkeepers stocking up and happy filled restaurants.
Next on the metro and finally getting a seat I take in the vast mixture of cultures in just one carriage. A pale young woman with piercings, a man with green hair and a short skirt, a couple kissing and a young girl looking up to her dad feeling completely safe in his hands.
We stop for pizza and laugh as the waiter jokes about the fact my brother must be the elder of us two and he tells us he has a friend from Swansea. He looks at us expectantly as if we must know him!
We finally get to the stadium and my nephews and son stand proudly for pictures and sit in the stands. There are trophies and golden boots and the roar of the recorded crowds as we walk through the enormous imposing building. Photos are taken with the massive silver European cup and families punch the air as if they have won it themselves. After some bartering my nephews persuade their dad to buy them two new football tops and can only wait a few minutes before they’re getting changed into them even before we get on the metro to return. On the train the three boys play with their overpriced but totally worth it Barcelona playing cards. They laugh and giggle at their made up games and the younger ones magic tricks.
We return to our hotel and the pool beckons. The six of us jump in and soak up the last remaining rays of the day.
The point to this narrative from my day?
As we set off to Spain we left the UK besieged every day by yet another tragedy in Europe. Another shooting. Another trauma for another family. And it worked. We were scared to some degree. I was almost embarassed by that fact. They were winning. I’d already decided I probably wouldn’t come abroad again.
However I have a new fight in me. I don’t give in to bullies in my day to day life and I refuse to be scared to live my life because of a minority because we do have a vibrant, kind, colourful and beautiful world.
That’s it for today. I’m off to the pool!
Keep living the life you want x
Happy Sunday x x x