Tag Archives: EVS life

Sono qui!

 

This is me, Filipa. I’m 28 years old and I’m from Portugal. Olá!

This is me, Karolina. I’m 22 years old and I’m from Poland. Cześć!

(…while having our first lunch break in a random cafe by the sea)

Filipa: It all started at Bologna’s central station at a non-existent “Mc Donald’s meeting-point” on a sunny Friday in the beginning of October. You had been there for a day, I had just arrived.

Karolina: After a long wait in the queue we managed to get our tickets to Pesaro. Thankfully, the attendant spoke English since we spoke no Italian. We still don’t. But we will get there. Remember all the people on the train?

F: Now that you mention it, yeah! Me with my two huge bags, you with your tiny rolling suitcase.

K: First of all, it was not that tiny. Secondly, I also had a hand bag and a backpack.

F: Either way. I remember the train being super busy and all my big bags and your tiny rolling suitcase plus hand bag plus backpack being in everyone’s way. So. How were you feeling back then?

K: I remember being anxious before departing, but I guess it was just the reisefieber.

F: Er… the reise-who?

K: It’s a German word. We don’t have it in Polish. But it means, like… when you are excited but stressed at the same time. Like a “travel fever”. Do you have that word in Portuguese?

F: Oh, fancy. Ok. Well, I had no such fever. And I don’t think we have any word for that in Portuguese.

K: What about you? How did you feel?

F: I remember just the excitement part. I don’t think I was stressed or anxious. I was just a little bummed that they hadn’t served any food on the plane. Thankfully, I had just arrived to the land of food! I remember us sitting in the train trying to get to know each other, speaking about what brought us here – what was it that you said about your two versions for explaining to people why you chose EVS?

K: I just finished my Bachelor’s degree and decided to take a gap year, but there are two “versions” of the reason why I did that. The official one says that the Master’s program I want to do is not open until next year so the gap year is kind of forced on me. But to be frank, I’m not 100% sure which one I want to apply for. Anyway, you said that you quit your job recently so that you could do an EVS, right?

F: Well, I did quit my job three weeks ago. Not specifically to do an EVS but because I had been working in the same company for five years and I wasn’t feeling challenged nor motivated anymore. I decided to quit and take a break from adult-life, to refocus and restore energies! Also, learning a new language is a big pro since I’ve been working in the tourism field and will probably continue doing so once I go back home. Can you still remember what were your first impressions of Italy?

C: I’ve been in Italy before so I had an idea of what to expect, but these were holiday trips, which is totally different from living in the country for six months. What I find difficult to adapt to are the working hours. In Poland we work continuously, we don’t have such a big break that allows you to go back home for lunch. Have you experienced some cultural differences as well?

F: Like you said, I’ve been to Italy before too and coming from a Latin country I believe we share some of the fundamental culture characteristics. There are, however, a few things that bug me, like the fact that everyone is so obsessed with relationships and weather you are or you are not dating someone. But I think what bothers me the most in Pesaro is the lack of public transportation, especially at night. I’m trying to look at it as an opportunity though, to improve my biking skills and getting fit! You know, after all the cheese and pasta we’ve been eating… a little calorie burn doesn’t hurt!

K: Sure…as they say, every cloud has a silver lining!

(the waiter came with our daily dose of carbs and we sat there, eating silently)

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Filipa and Karolina

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A Guide for Pesaro: it’s FOOD time!

Hello everyone! We are glad to be back to the Guide for Pesaro! Last week we talked about the surroundings of our lovely town, beautiful places and spots worthy of visit. This week however, we will be focusing on Pesaro itself, and we are going to talk about one of the most controversial topics in the country: food. Yes, Italians take the food subject really seriously, so we apologize in advance if the choices made in this article don’t match with everyone’s  preference. These choices are –like in the previous article– based in our experiences so far, complemented also with the opinions of other EVS volunteers. Having said that, let’s begin!

Aperitivo

There are many places in the town where you can have aperitivo. But, first of all, let’s explain what this exactly is. Generally between 7 and 9 pm, Pesarese people are used to have a drink while eating snaks. A glass of wine, an Aperol Spritz, some patatine fritte, cheese and prosciutto… It is not a dinner, but depending on the bar you can eat a lot for a small price. This take us to BarBarella, a bar next  to Theater Rossini. This is a perfect place for eating good, and has enough space upstairs for making a quite big meeting of friends.

We want to mention also a second place for having aperitivo. As the name says, the Bar Golden Beach is located in the beach, so when the weather is good  you can enjoy a really good aperitivo while watching the sea.

Bar Golden Beach: €4 – €6

BarBarella: €4 – €10

 

Piadina

If you haven’t eaten a ‘piadina’ yet, you should hurry. It’s a thin Italian flatbread, typically prepared in the Romagna historical region. Da Peppe is not only the perfect place to meet piadina for the first time but also to enjoy other sea food.

Da Peppe: € 7 – € 18

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Pizza

C’era una volta means literally translated: once upon a time. This particular place has a warm atmosphere; the staff is friendly, the interior, as well as the exterior, cozy and it is close to the theatre. There is a large choice of pizza’s and the prices are very reasonable. Highly recommended!

Farina, a pizzeria close to the beach, is loved by many people who have eaten there. This place has a nice ambience and the products are biological, which makes them also healthier. It’s no surprise Farina is marked as the best pizzeria on trip advisor. When you go there: don’t forget to try a pizza Rossini (named after the famous composer born in Pesaro).

C’era una volta: €10 – €20

Farina: € 10 – € 20

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Sushi

We know, we know, this is definitely not Italian food. But for the sushi lovers like us we need at least one restaurant per town to enjoy this Japanese dish, and luckily Pesaro has several. Two of them are Hachikò and Sakura. Both of them are delicious and have the option of a free buffet. Hachikò is more far of the city center than the other one, but it’s worth every step to it.

Sakura: €11 – €22

Hachikò: €15 – €20

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Gelato

Alice Il Gelato Delle Meraviglie: Whenever we talk with local people about Alice, they always know about which gelateria we’re talking about. Alice is a small place near the beach. It is absolutely the ice cream itself that makes this place so well-known: the combination of the tastes are special and delicious, whereby it doesn’t get boring.

Il Gelato Di Juri: Of course, to almost every foreigner here in Italy the ice creams are heaven, but again this one tastes great. There are a couple il gelato di juri’s places in the city. The places are all nice and the deserts are delicious.

Alice: €3 – €4

Juri: € 3 – € 5

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Beer

We’re not going to deny it: beer is not cheap in Pesaro. But the Birreria L’Hospoda is a very cheap option where you can drink it (always with moderation, of course). This local has more than 50 types of birra that imports from the Czech Republic, and it is the perfect choice to make if you want a delicious beer. The 4 stars at TripAdvisor don’t lie!

Birreria L’Hospoda: €3-5

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Coffee

And, last but not least important, we finish this gastronomic tour of Pesaro with our recommendation for drinking coffee. At the seacoast, we find El Cid. Don’t be fooled by its name, it is not a Spanish restaurant. They prepare Italian food and serve one of the best coffees in town. This fact, combined with a great location (next to the famous “Palla di Pomodoro”), makes El Cid one of the best places for relaxing and enjoy the drink.

El Cid: €1,5

Isabel and Demi

7 Italian Habits I will import to Spain

“This kind of piada is different”, said Isabel about piadina di Montefeltro, “do you think it will be better for a real piadina? The other one seems better for kebab”. At that moment I yelled: “Don’t say that again. Don’t use piadina as a kebab bread, for God’s sake!”. And then I realized that maybe, after these months I have assumed some Italian manners.

I know Italians would never accept me as a real one of them, but in any case I will take with me a few new habits from Italian way of life. Here are the most important ones:

  1. Obsession about cooking any kind of meal properly well. It doesn’t matter if it’s only spaghetti al pomodoro. You have to cook them correctly and, obviously, the pasta has to be “al dente”. I had to admit I has always hated pasta overcooked, so it wasn’t difficult to cook pasta to Italian friends. What I didn’t know was that they care so much about which kind of pasta goes with each sauce and now, after eating soooo much pasta during those months I realized why: it’s all about the “al dente”. Even if, unfortunately, I didn’t understand yet which pasta is ok with each “sugo”, I won’t ever never put again cream in the carbonara. I promise!

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  1. I will die because of the salt in my meals. Since I arrived I’ve taken the salty obsession from Italian way of cooking. But I don’t care. I love it as I love, not my boyfriend, but as I love pizza or focaccia (with thick salt!). So, more than him.

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  1. Gesticulate. Even more. As a Mediterranean Spanish I’m pretty used to move my hands in a way to complete my speeches, but as a expressively person, I will import a lot of gestures. So, Spanish friends, prepare to hear the “bo” with the shoulders movement when I will came back!

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  1. Coffee. Always. And gelato (but that’s not new, traditional ice cream made me crazy before coming). Since I arrived I have increased so much my coffee levels per day but I’m still not getting used to the “expresso”, I need a longer coffee. But, please, don’t say I deserve go to hell, I would never order an Americano, I have learnt the lesson: that tastes as a bad tea.

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  1. Being super careful when I’m crossing the street, especially when there’s a crosswalk. I’m convinced that you have heard about Italian driving way, so… Do I really have to explain the reason?

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  1. Speaking Italian “lamentandomi”, which means as a pesarese, so, in a complaining tone. I know that for them I’m still sounding as a fake, but I will keep working on my accent.

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  1. Missing aperitivo so much. I know it’s pretty similar to “irse de cañas” in Spain, but it would never be the same. There is no “aperi-cena”in our bars but, at least, our beer is cheaper (I’m pretty sure you will remember this at the moment you will have to decide where to do on holidays!).

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As you have already probably noticed,  most of the points in this article are about food and it’s on purpose.  The first reason is that Italians are always talking about food, receipts and new bars/restaurants (even more than Spanish, which is kind of difficult). Actually I really think it’s their favorite topic. The other ones are where to go on holidays, football and beautiful girls/handsome boys, relationships or loving problems, as you prefer to define them.

The other reason is more universal: humans like eating and it is a very important part of our culture and, so that, our identity. I have always believed that how we eat is a way to understand how we think as a community and how we socialize. At sum, meeting locals around the table is a good way to integrate you into a new culture and, as I see it, it makes easier feeling part of it.

So, if you are not Italian, I will beg you again to not use “piadina” as kebab bread if you can avoid it. Of course,I said it just in case you are not Italian, because I know that If you are you won’t. Or if you will, your family will disinherit you.

PS: In case you didn’t realize, I would like to make you notice that this post has been written in a humoristic way. So whether you have felt offended, I ask your forgiveness.

Maria