This past weekend, Joanna, one of our friends from orientation, invited us to spend a night at her apartment in La Palma, the little town where she teaches. The population of La Palma is about 10,000 people, and I was intrigued to see a Spanish small town, since Julia and I are having the opposite living experience in Sevilla (pop.=703,000). In the city center, La Palma feels like other Spanish cities I have been to, with several plazas fronting pretty church facades. A couple of differences-
1) Every eye was upon us when we sat down at a café or restaurant.
2) About one out of every two people was holding a baby. No exaggeration!
3) 10 minutes walking from the city center ended in farm fields stretching to the horizon.
We took advantage of the countryside to do some “trekking” (British English for hiking). Though the flat fields didn’t hold the charm or grandeur of mountains or coastlines, the overwhelming silence apart from bird calls and distant tractors droning was a nice reprieve from Sevilla’s constant buzz and clatter.
When Julia and I returned, we watched a frightening depiction of the future in Blade Runner with Agustín and Antonio. It made our time outside of the city seem even more precious!