The days following proved to be equally awkward and confronting. I was unaccustomed to everything about the Spanish way of life. The terribly inconvenient business hours with a mid-day siesta, yet no one seemed to mind. It was starkly different from the incessantly convenient American way of working. Dinners always lasted late into the balmy, summer evenings, regardless of what obligation came in the morning. I quickly learned the concept of “manana, manana.” Time was a concept of fluidity to the Spanish: whenever this task is complete, that’s when one moves on to the next.
In fact, when I first accidentally (having forgotten that the protest was still underway) and later deliberately traversed Sol, I found a group united under a banner that proclaimed, “Si no nos dejáis soñar, no os vamos a dejar dormir”: If you won’t let us dream, we won’t let you sleep. And rather than feeling threatened by such a statement, found myself nodding my head.