As many of you know, March 8th is International Women’s Day. I was fortunate enough to celebrate it right here in Spain. Days before the big day, I didn’t really know what to expect. I thought it would be just like back home in the U.S…just another day, since Women’s March happens in January. But, for the first time in Spanish history, this year March 8th was a huge deal!
My professor the day before had canceled class because herself and women all throughout Spain were going on strike, as a way to protest against the gender pay gap and domestic violence. This influenced many male professors to cancel class, so basically the entire University was “closed”. Having no class on Thursday was so nice.
On the actual day, I remember eating breakfast and turning on the morning news and seeing thousands of women already protesting in Madrid, in the midst of pouring rain and strong winds. No one in Alicante was ready to protest that early but I do know lots of people were at the University of Alicante protesting and carrying out different activities in support of the protest.
I, myself didn’t partake in the University protests because I decided to join the huge march that would be happen only a few feet away from my apartment building at 7pm. When the hour for it was nearing, I agreed to meet my host mom at 7:30pm by the steps of the food market. Well… as I was approaching the street corner to the the main ave, I was completely blown away by the multitudes women all ages sporting their color purple.
The chants of the women were definitely being heard. The amount of people that were their fighting for their rights was so big that it took about 20 mins to meet my host mom. Once, we had seen each other, she told me that she has never seen anything like this in the amount of years she’s lived in Spain!
It was a great sight! Women from many paths of life coming together to not only celebrate International Women’s Day but to make it known that we matter and deserve great respect not only in our workplaces but in our homes as well.
That night was a great experience!