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Andalucians Arise!

Because February 28th, which is Andalucia Day, fell on a Sunday this year, we’re celebrating it today, Monday March 1st. (Andalucians never miss the chance of a day off work or school!) Unfortunately, Covid restrictions plus a spell of unusually cloudy skies will dampen this year’s fiesta.

The day marks 39 years since Andalucians voted to become an autonomous community in 1980. Since then, they’ve had their own green-and-white flag and national anthem, and their own Regional Government – the Junta de Andalucia – which has powers over education, health, environment, policing, culture, social security, economic development …

Seville is the capital city. It’s also the birthplace of Flamenco, thanks to Andalucia ’s strong Romani presence (40% of Spain’s one million or so gypsies live in Andalucia).

Here’s the beginning of Andalucia ’s national anthem, words written by Blas Infante, the father of Andalucian nationalism. (It sounds better in Spanish, because it rhymes.)

The green and white flag

Returns, after centuries of war,

To say peace and hope

Under the sun of our land.

Andalucians, arise! …