Hello everyone and thanks for visiting and taking the time to check out our little insights into Catalan life. I am in awe that I am actually being allowed to participate in this project and hope that what I say may be of interest to some of you!
So, here goes. My name is Brian Cutts and I am a 46-year-old English language teacher. Born in South Yorkshire (UK), I came to Catalonia after finishing university back in 1988 with the aim of taking a well-deserved rest/gap year. I liked the place, the people, the lifestyle, and the climate so much that I decided to stay for a second year … Twenty-five years later and I’m still here, happily married and with two Anglo-catalan kids. We live in Tortosa, a small town in the south of Catalonia where people live “normal” everyday lives just like you – yes, Catalonia is not just Barcelona, the “universal city”. Nor is it all sun, beer and beaches like some of you may have seen in tourist hotspots such as Salou.
And this is one of the reasons I’ve decided to participate in this project. The push for independence has put Catalonia in the news recently, but sometimes the pacing and timing of news coverage does not allow for the full picture. Occasionally the Catalans are branded as a bunch of greedy, selfish nationalists who are making unreasonable demands. Sometimes, they may be pictured as peaceful idealists with much in common with other downtrodden nations or people. But the fact is that, away from the dramatic side of media coverage, basically we are just a bunch of “normal” folk who want to do what is normal in any democratic society – decide our own future. We ask for no more. Merely the right to choose our own future, for better or for worse. And while we are doing this, we are still getting on with our lives as are all other European citizens. Anyway, I hope to give an insight into the everyday life of many Catalans, through my own one, whilst at the same time offering my personal vision of the “bigger picture”.
So, I’ll probably tweet about my daily concerns and interests; learning how to bring up a family, cycling around town, popular music, reasons why you should visit this area, thoughts on the independence movement, and even how I make a living – usually trying to satisfy the demand for English-learning, or working on Catalan/English translations with my wife. I sometimes even find time to tweet from my own account at @brian_ebre or blog at http://briancutts.blogspot.com.es or http://tempsdeparaules.blogspot.com.es