Monday, September 20

An ode – at the end of the summer – to the Canary Islands

I still have the sensation of the Canary Islands in my body and not precisely because now I am darker -which does not represent a greater difficulty for my hot land body- and I wear swimsuit marks, or because I continue to find sand in my backpack -which also- ; but because I have that feeling that you have when you have connected with something or someone and when you have felt happy. I am convinced of verbalizing, of manifesting, of telling people what you feel, of telling who you admire that you do it, or saying “I love you” without giving so many laps. I have also learned to thank places – even difficult situations, but that is another issue – those who welcome you, who give you lessons or happiness and I have therefore decided to write to the Canary Islands.

I have lived in love with every corner of Spain, with all that I have been able to reach and I have no doubt that I am lacking, too. One day I fell in love with the streets and the sky of Madrid and I stayed. About five years ago – I think – I got to know Tenerife and I fell in love with the Island, with the kindness and beauty of the people, their accent, their sympathy, their party spirit and a few days ago I was in Gran Canarias and it has been to relive all that and more. , has been reaffirming my infatuation with the Canary Islands.

What happens to me with the Canary Islands is something that takes me to my origin, to what I am familiar with. People on the street who ask you if you need help and walk with you giving you recommendations or directions on how to get to a place, those who talk to you and start an unsuspecting chat as if you were just another neighbor in the neighborhood. The perfumer who treated me with the patience and affection with which I had never been treated before in one of these stores, not to mention the impressive ability to detect aromas. I know it is not much relevant, but it is that he had been in the trade for more than 30 years and his skill led me for a moment to remember the protagonist of “El perfume” –without the fatal nuances obviously–, it is impressive that there are such people .

In the Canary Islands, potatoes are potatoes, not potatoes –and my goodness they are a slow death with that mojo–, they call you “my girl” “my boy” and even if it is a passing phrase, they look so pretty. When I got to the Vegueta market in Las Palmas, I am not lying, I gave it four laps while admiring every detail, it was as if I had entered a tunnel that took me directly to the market square of my hometown, Florence, she was very young. southern Colombia. The colors, the fruits, for the first time in all my years in Spain I saw a stall selling herbs -which were not packaged and in herbal stores-, thus with branches in large bundles, hanging in all their expression, some drier than others with its scents in fury, those that my grandmother and my mother taught me to use at home for infusions, natural remedies and to smoke for good energies.

It was that feeling of being here and being there, something like what I heard Pablo say, a Canarian boy who welcomed us: “He is that being from the Peninsula without being there, but with that connection to Latin America without being from there” ; Well, that was like that middle ground that being in Spain gave me, feeling at times that I was in my mother’s house. That which I can read from my experience as a migrant, that being here and being happy, but always feeling that I am from there and that there are things that transcend the material, what is described, things that are read by feelings, so that you carry in your memory, in your senses, in your experiences.

It will also be the historical common points that we have, it will be the sea, the sun, the ease of its people, but the Canary Islands gave me a hundred years of life, I do not confirm or deny that I began to fantasize about going to live, at least a few months and in some time in my life to that beautiful place. Summer is ending, a long time ago I had not been so happy, so full, so calm, even in the midst of certain worrisome things, but with many more to be thankful for. Canarias has been the perfect conclusion, it deserved to be told.

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