Spain, here I come! I spent my junior year in Seville. It was the 1981-1982 school year. Felipe González was president, Spain’s entrance into NATO was a divisive issue, and soccer enthusiasts from around the globe descended on the Iberian Peninsula in the summer of ’82 for the World Cup.
It was the first time I’d been abroad, and afterward my life veered very far away from my southern, suburban roots. I marveled bug-eyed at everything from the food, to the language, to the joyous sense of celebration that was a constant in the streets — whether it was something on a grand scale, such as the Feria de Abril in Seville, or gatherings at corner bars where many stopped on their way to work for a daybreak shot of cognac.
I plan to go back this fall to see what Spain is like 31 years later. Much has happened in that time, both in my world and in theirs.