Belle strade inaspettate

Cinque mesi. Sono arrivata in Italia, a Pesaro, più di cinque mesi fa per il mio SVE a Vicolocorto e non riesco ancora a capire come è possibile che l’esperienza finirà in meno di 30 giorni. Questi cinque mesi sono passati velocemente ma anche di una maniera così intensa che mi costa ricordare tutti i momenti vissuti. Nuove abitudini, nuove amicizie, nuova lingua, nuovo cibo…, ma soprattutto, una nuova “io”.

In questo tempo ho imparato dallo staff di Vicolocorto che si può lavorare con un sorriso. Ho fatto il volontariato con altri giovani stranieri con cui ho condiviso la casa e anche il tempo libero (qualcuno ha detto di andare dagli SVE della Croce Rossa?). L’elenco di persone che mi vengono in mente è lungo: Mariam, Julien, Guillaume, Demi, Isabel, Anna, Eli, Ola, Sami… E ovviamente nella lista non può mancare la mia Alysson e il suo sorriso (Cara, sai che ti voglio molto bene e ti auguro una bella vita a Barcelona!).

Gli incontri di conversazione in inglese come il Ritrovo dei Viaggiatori e il Pesaro Language Exchange sono diventati un’opportunità per fare amicizia con italiani e (come no!) spagnoli e argentini. Comunque non voglio dimenticare i ragazzi del Centro di Aggregazione Giovanile e Mery, che mi hanno insegnato il valore della pazienza e sempre avranno un posto nel mio cuore per la loro gentilezza, innocenza e curiosità. Come non ti possono essere simpatici quelli che ti insegnano a cucinare la piada?

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Ad ottobre, quando preparerò la valigia porterò con me quelle cose più lussuose che nessuno ti può rubare: più conoscenza dell’inglese e dell’italiano, il ricordo del tramonto dalla spiaggia di Pesaro; la immagine della piazza del Duomo di Firenze di notte, bianco e silenzioso dopo una giornata piena di turisti…

Infatti quando ci penso, sembra un cliché. È detto sempre: “cambiare di posto apre la mente”, “viaggiare ti fa diventare un’altra persona”. Ma lo sento davvero: quando arriverà ottobre non sarò la stessa che ero quando sono partita. Sebbene non sia riuscita con delle sfide che avevo da prima,  non mi preoccupo. Pensavo che avrei avuto più tempo per scrivere, per conoscermi un po’ meglio, per avere le idee più chiare di cosa volessi fare nella vita e la situazione è diventata esattamente il contrario: mi vedo sola di fronte al mondo e l’unico che so è che non voglio ritornare a casa.

Non posso dire di non essere nervosa. L’ansia c’è, ma la paura non c’è più. E questa è la ragione per la quale sono soddisfatta di avere preso la decisione di trasferirmi a Pesaro. Mi sento sicura e motivata per affrontare gli imprevisti.

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Venire a Pesaro era il primo passo per cominciare a credere in me e nelle mie capacità. Se qualcuno mi avesse detto ad aprile: “Se vai in Italia, parlerai italiano, farai amicizia con SVE di tutta Europa e, perfino, farai kayak al golfo di Napoli”, mi sarei messa a ridere.

Insomma, invece di aiutarmi a decidere la mia strada professionale, questa esperienza mi ha aiutato a vedere tutti quegli aspetti indimenticabili per una bella vita, la prima di questi è la gioia di viverla e, poi, la curiosità per crescere condividendola con persone con interessi e culture così diverse.

Come diceva Henry Miller:

“La meta di ognuno non è mai un luogo, ma piuttosto un nuovo modo di vedere le cose”.

 

Maria

 

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Ciao Belli! I’m Demi!

Ciao tutti,

It has been some time since I’ve arrived here in Italy. Two days after I had received my diploma, I was ready to step out of my comfort zone. After a few delays on the way, I was happy to step into the train to Pesaro. I remember I was wearing my winter boots during this hot summer day and I was watching the scenery and stops obsessively, afraid I caught the wrong train. As soon as I arrived I calmed down a little bit. Before coming, I have been warned I must take things slow here, so I tried to follow this advice. I grabbed my notebook, put on my headphones and started to write things down.

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My name is Demi and I am eighteen years old. I just finished high school, in which I practiced mostly economic, social and cultural sciences. My interests are varied; (modern) art, music, drawing, reading, playing tennis, having walks, swimming and of course having a good time with friendly people. I come from a city in the Netherlands, close to The Hague, which is called Voorburg, so for me it was a bit amusing hearing that Pesaro is the city of bikes.

Being this young and having little work experience, there already have been some firsts for me during this trip: my first volunteering experience, my first time living with housemates (abroad), my first time traveling on my own and, last but not least, my first ‘aperitivo’. The other volunteers are very welcoming and helpful, as well as my colleagues at Vicolocorto.

Until now, this EVS experience seems like a dream, due to the wonderful opportunities I’ve had. I got to meet very kind people, to receive Italian lessons, to work at Fiesta Globàl, to go to Naples during my on-arrival training and to visit other places and friends I made here in Italy. I like the fact that I am allowed to fulfill different tasks, such as going to the youth center (Totem), meeting up with people for an English conversation and doing promotional work.

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I have been able to experience, enjoy and think about my life goals during this EVS project. I discovered EVS is about giving ideas, receiving experience, developing personally and making friends. The reason I decided to do this, is because I wanted to do something completely different than I was used to do. I wanted to work, travel, meet new people, get to know myself and appreciate the world around me. It’s however quite a coincidence I ended up in Italy in particular. I focused rather on the content of the project I wanted to work on than the country I wanted to live in (even though I had a preferred working in South Europe). Now I am more than happy to live here, in a country with plenty of history and delicious food.

After this EVS experience I would like to study communication and information sciences in Utrecht (The Netherlands). I haven’t found my dream job yet, so only time will tell what kind work I will be doing next. For now I am going to make the best of my remaining four months and enjoy la dolce vita here in Italy.

Demi

My EVS Experience

Hi! My name is Isabel, I’m 24 years old and I’m from Valencia, a sunny and beautiful city on the east of Spain. I studied Psychology and then I specialized in the educational and clinical fields. Even before finishing my universitarian studies I had already decided what my next step would be. I wanted to leave my comfort zone, challenge myself and live new experiences. A good friend of mine told me about the EVS, and after doing some digging I decided to apply  for Vicolocorto Association in Italy. Almost a month after coming here, I can say that it was the right decision.

I had always had this need to travel, to know other cultures and to experience them, but I never had the opportunity to do so until now, with the EVS program. It is the perfect time, because I have finished my studies but I have not yet entered into the labour market. Of course there is always tiny (and not so tiny) fears or reasons not to do it, but I think this is something normal that happens to almost everyone the first time they go abroad, because they have never done something like that before and there is a little resistance to go into the unknown, out of our comfort zone. However, once you go there you realize that those fears were not real, or at least not as big as you thought: there are always people who help you and try to make your experience the best possible, you meet many people and make a lot of friends, and you quickly feel part of the hosting association.

So, let’s talk now about the experience until now…

During the first week we (me and the other new volunteer from the Netherlands) learned everything about the association and the project, the city and its history, and all the important locations here (the library, the youth center, food stores, etc). After that, we began to work. The weekly schedule is full of different activities: twice a week we go to a youth center and we share experiences with the young people who go there, playing with them and talking about our own culture and theirs; we also promote the Association in the streets and in events around and out of the city; we collaborate with other associations or NGOs, and soon we will start the English language exchange.

Additionally, the last week of July we assisted to the initial Training Course, an special welcoming event that reunites EVS volunteers from all over Europe that are currently starting their volunteering service in Italy, and provides them the basic information about Erasmus+ program, EVS rights and duties, the intercultural implication of the experience, culture and costumes of Italy and basic Italian language lessons.

These last weeks we have been on vacation, but now we have started again and we are now participating in a language exchange, where people gather to talk and practice their English.

It has been a great experience so far, not only we have made many friends, gone to the training course in Naples and participated in several events, we have also done many new things, travelled a lot, learned Italian and improved English.

I’m looking forward to keep working and enjoying this EVS the rest of the project!

Isabel