Lessons from the +34 (28004)

There is nothing like it. It is purely and objectively one of the best places to be.

  • The people
  • The food
  • The historical significance
  • The sun + weather
  • The music
  • The topography
  • The nightlife
  • The accessibility
  • The museums
  • The architecture

Spain gives your life range and depth that comes second to none, especially Madrid. It is underrated and below the radar; let’s keep it that way. It has nostalgic vibes to it, it isn’t timeless as timeless is boring; it is a cocktail of old tradition mixing with new – something like a classic but with a twist. There are a handful of reasons why I love this country and will forever call it home.

Things from Spain and in Spain are for Spain. The wine, the cheese, the bread, the tortillas, the gazpacho, and the jamon – these are simple examples of many exceptional products that aren’t broadcasted for the world. These luxuries are daily expectations. The more lavish and “sexy” Italian and French products are stuffed into foreign supermarkets, good for them and good for us whom consume them. However, the Spaniards keep things in Spain for the Spanish. Why this is the case is a mystery to me. Perhaps it is a lack of marketing capabilities, perhaps a sense of laziness, perhaps a sense of wanting to keep things within. Whatever the root-cause is, it makes the country all the more attractive to me. You want it; you come get it in Spain.

La Siesta Espanola Se Rie Del Sueno Americano. “The Spanish Siesta laughs at The American Dream” is a sticker at one of my favorite bars in Madrid. When looking at this sticker, you will hear background noise of glasses clanking together, grandparents yelling at the kids to come and eat, pregnant women gossiping over a non-alcoholic beer – it is a Tuesday night. While Americans chase financial gains to make them happy, the Spaniards chase free and quality time with friends and family, the ability to relax. Both countries are climbing the mountain to get to happiness, however, I vibe and appreciate the Spanish trail more. There are 168 hours in a week – how we divide and conquer our time is up to us, there is no right or wrong way. However, I can say with confidence that the Spanish have a work hard, play hard mentality whereas other countries may find themselves working harder to be able to play later on. The Spanish live in the now, for better or worse, and I love that. The “siesta” trumps the “dream” in many aspects of life.

Some of my best friends in the world are Spanish. We fast tracked our relationship, a relationship that would normally take years to develop, because of our willingness to bend cultural norms, break down language barriers, and squeeze every opportunity into the most. They are social butterflies that are constantly hungry to see one another, interact with one another, hang out and practice the art of doing nothing while sipping an ice cold gin and tonic, basking in the sun, and trading stories. No plan is a good plan – I miss that mindset. In a world where we are constantly doing something, planning a trip, gallivanting across cities to chase the best party, the coolest restaurant, et cetera, there is comfort in doing nothing. When doing nothing, you find yourself 100% there, which is hard to come by as of late.