Well, it feels like just yesterday that we eagerly began our filmmaking journey and we have now experienced our last full day in Spain. We all are still reeling from a busy week and the fun of being out on the town so it was a slow start to the morning for a lot of the crew. Those of us who managed to rouse ourselves awake on time enjoyed a delicious breakfast at the hotel, then boarded a bus for a walking tour of Málaga.

While our tour guide talked about the warm, sunny weather they are known for here, the group couldn’t help but laugh as we began our tour in the pouring rain, much like the rest of the days we witnessed this week. I am glad that this helps with the drought they were experiencing, but selfishly we all wish we had a couple more days of sunshine. Regardless, the town still looks beautiful in the rain.

We also got some history of Málaga which I always find interesting. It was established around 1200 B.C. and has undergone many transformations. They have always been ahead of the curve in some ways regarding industrialization and changing with the times. In the 1800s they were the 2nd most industrialized city in Spain. As the years passed, more people were drawn to the city including notable celebrities such as Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, and Jackie Kennedy. The prime location next to the sea and the atmosphere provided by the architecture and the culture attract people from all over the world. As they started to focus more on tourism, they increased the number of museums (currently 36, including the world-famous Picasso Museum), built an airport that can serve 30 million passengers a year (and last year reached 22 million), and shared their city’s culture on a grander scale through marketing efforts (such as building up the Semana Santa week to be an immersive experience bringing 400 million euros to the city during that week of tourism alone)!  Today the city feels alive as you walk around streets full of history and I am so glad that we are ending our journey here.

The afternoon was full of sleep, shopping, and getting soaked walking between destinations. Some of us made a lunch pit stop at McDonald’s to experience the differences in the Spain menu and let me tell you, they do us a huge disservice in America with the options available. Here we ate Biscoff Cookie and Milkybar Mcflurries, McExtreme burgers (with egg and cheese sauce), Chicken McBites, Sour Cream McShaker Fries, and a handful of other items that were just as good. We all like to make this stop wherever we travel abroad because it is a unique experience every time. I am just sorry for the people who come to the U.S. from abroad and find our meager menu. What can you do?

After some showers and some laundry, we are all ready for our farewell dinner before we head to the airport in the morning. A group of us were discussing today that we got really lucky with the group of us who are working on this year’s documentary. From the very beginning, everyone was nice, welcoming, and ready to help with whatever you needed. If someone had a question or needed to borrow something they forgot to pack (this happened quite a bit haha!) the team was ready to jump in and make sure they were taken care of. We had busy days, but we were still happy to spend dinners and nights together laughing until we cried, dancing, and working together to set ourselves up well for the intense three weeks of post-production work ahead. Having incredible professors in Dr. Luskay and Professor Guarneri was critical to our experience getting this accomplished in such a short amount of time. They kept us on task while allowing us to have fun, infusing their passion into us when we were feeling exhausted, and inspiring us to want to be our best selves for them, the Andalusia region, the coopers, and each other. We are also incredibly appreciative of the tireless work done by those organizing the trip, Francoise and Isa! This would have been much more chaotic without their coming around with us on location to help translate, get us fed/transported, and smooth things over!

We are really proud of the work we did this week in Spain, but our job is nowhere near done. After we touch down in the U.S. on Sunday evening, the post-production process begins! The story is set, the soundbites are found, and the editors make it all come together to create a documentary that lets you experience the incredible Cooper tradition we were able to immerse ourselves in this week. May 2nd is officially premiere day, so get excited for that! In the meantime, follow our social media to stay up to date on our progress and to read our weekly blog posts.

For now, it isn’t adios, it’s just hasta luego!