Written by Joan Vila i Sandra Compte, Patronat Fundació Espavila - Published on the 16 July 2010
Make the effort to understand and learn our culture.
It was 4 p.m. and the weather was very hot. The train station was plenty of people that want to go to Barcelona to take part in the demonstration, bearing flags. At due time, a jam packed train stopped at the station and pushing we got into the wagon. The heat, the flags and the enthusiasm of people created a cheerful and festive atmosphere. In the midst of the racket, there was a little girl about six or seven years old, that did not understand nothing and complaining about the all these discomforts. Her mother, trying to keeping her amused, explained her, a suitable story: “There was a time a very bad man, which did not allow us to speak freely. He had watchmen and policemen everywhere, for any reason they threatened us or even they brought us to the jail. After his death, came other men that due to their words seemed to be good people, but now we have realized that they want to deceive us. This is the reason why we are going to Barcelona today, because we do not want to be deceived anymore.” Then the little girl took the flag from her mother’s hands, full of motivation looked her and raised it. Her attitude could not be more graphic. I want to do the effort to go to Barcelona, it is worth it. I do not want to be deceived anymore.

The train arrived at destination on time; it seemed that it was in a hurry to arrive to the station too. “Paseo de Gracia”, by the way, quite third-world, it was a swarming with people that little by little, can go out to the street.

It was almost 6 p.m. The ”Paseo de Gracia” was full of people with flags and banners. The hot was stifling, that is why we were looking for some shade. We put ourselves near the “casa Batlló”, a jewel of Gaudi architecture. With the aim of share that moment by gathering, I start to talk to the woman on my right: “The preparation of this demonstration is becoming a great success. Despite that this terrible hot, people have made the effort to go out to the street instead to go to the beach”. She answered me:” Sorry for not answering you in Catalan, but I understand you perfectly. I’ve been living here for almost 50 years. We came together with my husband, God rest his soul, from a village in Extremadura. I love my land, but I feel entirely Catalan. Catalonia has given me everything, job, social welfare and wonderful sons. I came here with one of them, my daughter-in-love and two grandsons. Look at them! They are so nice! Aren’t they? “And then the lady, said really bored:”Today I am very sad not to talk Catalan, but I promise you that soon I will speak it as well as you.” And then, we let us go. The demonstration started to move. The big flag and the top brass were ahead of us. However, I was thinking in this woman that finally had found the motivation to learn Catalan. She wanted to make the effort to try it.

The demonstration was a great success. It has been proved that Catalan culture flame still burning. Catalonia is a land with a very own language and culture. In a plenty and modern democracy as ours is supposed to be, any law, any court, no matter how constitutional is, can not cut or prevent the basic rights of a whole nation. Catalonia deserves this effort. Wise you up!