First guest author on Budjism blog is Julija Milovanović, who is currently volunteering and living in Manresa, Spain, a beautiful town I had the chance to visit in 2015. Following text is exploring her first impression about the environment where she has spent almost 8 months.
Manresa, I arrived – starting my newlife abroad
After a touching goodbye with my family and friends and almost 3 hours of flight from Belgrade, I arrived to Barcelona’s airport in June 2015. I visited this lovely city few years ago, when I had a high school trip, but this time was different. Alone in another country, in a new city, with new people and only one big suitcase, I was ready to start my new adventure for the next 9 months. I mentioned Barcelona in the begining, but in fact, Barcelona isn’t a city where I’am doing my EVS project. Why I mentioned it, is that I could somehow locate the town where I live, because it isn’t that known outside of Spain. Someone would say, why are you writing about your arriving when you are almost finishing your time in Spain? But, I would answer that it is better now than never and that this experience deserves to be heard. So, after living in Spain for around five months, I decided to describe my life, my EVS experience, traveling and other interesting things that I live through during my stay.
Manresa, the city where I live, is a small city with the population of around 76.000 inhabitants, located in the geographical center of Catalonia, and often called the Heart of Cataluña. It is only 50km away from the Capital of Catalonia, but to arrive there I sometimes need around 2 hours. I’ve always thought that Serbian trains are the slowest ones but you should see the ones here!
Nature around Manresa is exceptional and the city itself has something special. Even though most of the times color of the city is grey and there are not a lot of parks, I really like the narrow streets in the old part of the city, the Cathedral – La Seu, view at the Montserrat mountain from almost every part of the city, promenade along the river, and a very important thing – multiculturality. I experience multiculturality everywhere, at work, in the streets and in my flat, and this is why Manresa is so special to me – you are surrounded with different nationalities but in the end we are all the same.
Last five months, I had 10 roommates in total, from all over the world. Now, we are six in the flat and I live with two Italian girls, a German, a Russian and a British girl. We live in a huge flat with a lot of memories left from all other EVS volunteers that had spent their time in Manresa. Cooking couscous and eating cakes, traveling together, watching movies and spending time with our friends from Manresa are the things we do in our free time. I can say that Manresa is a city of volunteers, because besides us, there are 3 other volunteers: two Germans and a Moldavan girl who live in another flat. Although we are all very different, some of the things that we have incomon is comunicating in Spanish and doing an EVS project. It is very interesting for me to meet such a variety of people who share my excitement for volunteering.Three days per week we have Castellano and Catalan language classes which are very useful, because English is a not so common here. Every day we are mastering the languages more and more.
I do my EVS project in the Creu Roja (Red Cross) of Manresa. I have two types of work. In the morning I work in the Office and it the evening I work with kids. I mostly work with Moroccans, but also with other kids that suffered some immigration crises or need social support. My job is very creative and fun, I help in organization of the activities and have to play, play and play. Who could ask for better?
You can falso follow her own blog – WondeRoads
Expect more guest authors soon.