It’s Cool to Flaunt My Barcelona Life in the U.S., Right?


I don’t brag nor do I name drop or gloat because I was taught early on that name droppers are obnoxious and bragging is tactless. But over the last few weeks of my self-titled Family Reunion US Tour back to the states from Barcelona, my foreign residence status has arisen in various conversations while in flight to my next destination. Funny enough its also come up in random situations like buying stuff at a CVS drugstore when I accidentally presented my Spanish ID when paying with a credit card for example.

Against my better judgment and the social etiquette that was instilled in me by my parents, I’ve gladly gone on and on about myself and its felt damn good. Bragging is bad but does it count if your just answering questions?

The aspect I’ve enjoyed most of this experience has been the response from people once I say, ”Oh, but I live in Barcelona.” Their eyes light up and their facial expression morphs into surprise, then amazement followed by envy with a final gasp of “Wow, that’s cool, how exciting!” And for a fleeting moment it makes the headache of visa renewals, being treated like an outsider and filing US tax returns from abroad all worth it because for a few seconds I am that person that makes someone else jealous. I’m that person they hope their son or daughter becomes. Its also showed me that even though my fellow American compatriots don’t travel as much as Europeans they still have a great deal of respect for us gringos that do.

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