postvirtual

We are the world

In Madrid, Spain, Spanish Popular Marches on 21 June 2011 at 23:40

Dear people,

The last few days I have spent in what is now colloquially known as ‘the bunker’. The cave of Audiovisuales.

The place is looked after by the sweet little lady I described as the true face of the revolution, comrade Maria. Together with her daughter she also checks out the national and international press. She is better informed than most of us. When I got a call this morning from the journalist of the Financial Times who had interviewed me at Sol and who wanted my confirmation on a march on Brussels, I should have put her through to her. It turned out she knew. ‘Yes, they’re planning a march. Didn’t you know?’

I didn’t. The only thing I knew about was a few dozen other marches. It was the hot topic at the General Assembly last sunday. The idea of marching on parliament from the various neighbourhoods of Madrid has apparently been a good one. This time people are planning to walk to Madrid from all over Spain. In more than twenty cities preparations are under way. Santiago de Compostela, Granada, Cádiz, Murcia, A Coruña, Barcelona etc. etc. The column from Valencia has already left. All of the marches should converge on Madrid on July 23. On the way people from all the villages and cities of Spain will be invited to join. It’s going to be historical.

So here I am. I was thinking of packing my bags to visit Spain, and now Spain has decided to come to Madrid. I’m excited. I immediately want to start drawing an immense map of the country, trace the routes, put it up on the wall and cover it with coloured pins. Then every day I will call around to get information from the spot so that I can move the pins accordingly. Then I would lean back in my comfortable chair, I would put my feet on the table, I’d look up at the map and I’d say: ‘Wow.’

But there’s more I want to do. I want to contact the comrades of Extension, I want to get information from all the marches, I want them to send footage, lots of footage so that we can make something like a daily two-hour television show for our channel to report on what’s happening. I want images of the country side, I want images of the people putting up their tents in the middle of the forests and the mountains of Spain, I want camp fires, guitars, assemblies, village squares, church bells. I want it all, every night at prime time.

Then I get a call. Forget the map, forget the marches. It’s comrade Afrah. I am needed as a voice in a chorus. “Take everybody along. Today we’re recording ‘Puerta del Sol’”, the hymn of the revolution. So after a short trip with the metro we’re in the private sound studio of one our musical comrades, gathered around a microphone. We come from Spain, from Greece, from Turkey, from Venezuela, from Morocco, from Holland. We are the world. And we sing about what this world is going to be like, and how it all started in Puerta del Sol.

It’s late when we come back to the bunker. I look through the papers, and I’m content. They start breathing the wind of change. I can feel the first pearls of sweat breaking out on the foreheads of the bigwigs in Brussels. They urge Spain and Greece to push ahead with the austerity measures, no matter what the citizens may think about it. Those measures are absolutely necessary. “There is no plan B.”

I don’t remember the name of the most venerable sir who said this. But he can rest assured. He doesn’t have to worry. He can go home.

We’re working on plan B.

Oscar

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