Nopales interconnecting cultures

The nopal, also known as Prickly Pear in English or Opuntia in Latin, has always had a special meaning for me. It is one of my favorite plants and themes, as this plant originates from Mexico, my native country, where it is a plant of great importance in ancient and daily life; in architecture, gastronomy, literature, textiles etc. But it has also become characteristic around the Mediterranean Sea, as it was brought to Europe many centuries ago, by the Spaniards.

During the six years I lived by the Mediterranean Sea in Spain, while at College, I came to realize the importance of the nopales in the Mediterranean landscape and culture. It occurred to me that the nopal is an irrefutable evidence, and link, between Mexico and the Mediterranean region.

Nowadays the nopal plant is Mexican, of course, but in parallel, it has also become Mediterranean as well. I consider this to be the beauty of the interconnection of cultures; how the Mexican nopal grew roots by the Mediterranean and how the Spanish language grew roots in the Americas.

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