The Power of Stories

Something lovely happened to me yesterday. I got an e-mail from a university friend of my parents. My parents lived in Palo Alto for four years when they were in their mid-20s, from 1968 to 1972. If you consider the social environment in California then, compared to that in Spain, you can imagine the influence these four years had on the rest of their lives.

I grew up looking at the photos of them in California, with the raccoons, the Old Faithful and I also kept hearing the same names of their very close friends (also in “study exile”). So when I received an e-mail yesterday from one of them, politely asking for my parents’ contact details and thinking that I probably didn’t remember him, I felt a really warm feeling inside. Interesting, because I can’t remember meeting him – but his presence had stayed with me for years, through my parents’ stories.

I am fond of Stanford – because my parents were. I visited it once in 1988 and felt like I was home. I feel like the Robinson family were part of my life – I never met them but they provided my parents with a home away from home for some time. And I know that my lack of fear of leaving my country at quite a young age was the result of being brought up by two people who set off on an adventure themselves.

I’m glad I got that e-mail yesterday. It has made me wonder where I would be without these stories. I can’t wait to continue creating some of my own.

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