Eli has sorted a meeting for me with one of her tenants. It’s taken over a week to organise because the guy is very busy. I’m meeting him tonight at 07:00pm at Kaelderkold Craft Beer Carrer del Cardinal in El Gotic, the Gothic region. He is American and pro-independence.

We meet at the appointed time and I begin by telling him about my travels and project.

Steve Hendricks is a published author and investigative journalist. I feel like a total fraud and admit as much to him. However, he is very gracious and takes me seriously. He tells me that I’m doing all the right things that he often talks to other journalists when researching an article or book. We have a great conversation. Sadly, even though I learn a lot about him and his views, I learn very little more about the rationale behind the independence movement in the Spain of today. The Spain which is a relatively key member of the EU. Would this dreamed of new Catalan state be an EU member?

25th February

Today I have another meeting with Pol and his friends.

Daniel works in TV broadcasting and is also pro-independence. But, is somewhat ambivalent in his views. He voted for autonomy for Catalunya but against full nation status. He wants assurances and defined terms to be included in any future referendum. He feels that everything has been far too vague in the past, too open to interpretations which may not be congruent with his own views regarding the future of Catalunya.

Alvaro tells me that he is an LSE graduate. His degree is in International Relations and Economics and he works for Caixa Bank as what I take to be some kind of relationship manager. He ultimately wants to be an investment banker or a financial analyst. He is against independence because, he believes that the economic consequences will be catastrophic for the Catalan people.

I’m still hunting for that defining piece of information which will help me to determine how much of this issue is down to reasoned socio-political arguments and how much of it is a passionate desire for the recognition of a cultural identity. Obviously both factors are playing a role but, all I’ve seen so far is passion. Passion for an identity which I feel doesn’t really exist. At least not as a significant difference between that of a “normal” Spaniard and a Catalan.

Placa de Catalunya – independence, and the release of political prisoners, runs across all age groups.
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