I already knew this blog post was going to be more personal than the other ones. It’s not surprising… I guess staying at home gives us the space to drive inwards, to walk inside if we can’t walk outside. Or at least this is how I perceive it. During these four weeks I’ve been navigating through all nuances of emotional states, from grief to resilience, from creative flow to profound apathy, from deep enjoyment of self time and introversion to a strong yearning for human connection, from hope for creating healthy sustainable communities to insecurity regarding the personal and collective future.
I am bringing to you one poem I wrote, one day at the beginning of the quarantine, when I was enjoying the warm sun on the building rooftop, our only connection with nature during this time. I will let the poem speak to you, and below I will explain the meanings behind those words and how they are connected to the moment we are living.
A personal story
The significance of this poem, as the title also suggests, is the journey from grief to blossoms, the process of acceptance of the life cycle, when facing situations when we cannot control things. The theme of grief was very present in those days for me. In the first day when the quarantine started in the south of Italy, my beloved grandfather passed away. The event brought feelings of sadness and pain of a sort never experienced before. It was the first time when I really faced the death of a beloved. I couldn’t go home to my family in Romania because of travel restrictions and couldn’t say goodbye. But the situation was not beyond my control. When dealing with death, you realize how little you can actually do. I asked myself what I can do with those wounds and eventually I put them into songs, poems and written expressions of gratitude. I was trying to embrace and transform those feelings through art and meditation. With the loss of a dear one and the current isolation situation, I started to reflect about acceptance of what is, the cycle of life. It’s not easy, everything inside you wants to resist to things, although you know deep down you can’t actually change them.
And in that moment, under the rays of the sun, when I wrote the poem, I felt a weird blend of grief and resilience, like I was finally starting to slowly accept. I felt a glimpse of guilt there as well, like there was a part of me feeling bad for allowing myself to heal from those wounds, a voice telling me that I don’t have access to anything but sadness. Yet there was a contrary feeling as well, the gratitude blossoming inside like a little flower blossoming from concrete on an ounce of soil. In that moment I was inspired to write a poem, but I had no pen or paper, so I had to write it in the back of my mind.
The first verses reflect the real scene of that moment through my sensations: the caress of the mild wind blowing, the sun warming up my skin, the beginning of a new day. With the coming of the day, the fear, dark thoughts, solitude, agony and melancholia from the night were slowly going, living space for the softer feelings of the day. And just as I was wondering what the next verse could be, I heard a hummingbird singing somewhere close, as a sign of hope that there is something there, a form of life, chanting. And with the chant, acceptance was ever more present inside and I got this message, that life unfolds, that everything comes and goes, that it’s the way things are, that I cannot control, but can only accept, trust, express my gratitude to all it was and is to be. Something in me felt still in the process of healing, weeping silently. But along with that there was something blossoming as well. I thought of a snowdrop, the white flower symbolizing spring, but in my personal story also a symbol of my childhood, my home, my roots, a place where I was returning often during those days.
A collective story
Although this poem has so many meanings coming from my personal experience, it can be connected with the collective situation we are living. Like the loss of a beloved one, it’s a situation where we don’t have control over things and an invitation to cultivate acceptance and reflect. Grief, in this case, is manifested in a longing for health and peace, longing for moving outside freely, for connecting with nature and with other humans; or maybe it’s manifested in feelings of pain when witnessing inner and outer struggles of this crisis, dealing with the loss of certainty or stability, or of things we were relying on that we took for granted. Certain systems of values are now shaking; questions are raised about the sustainability of our forms of leaving (financial systems based on having to “earn your bread”, urban structures, functionality of public services, strong hierarchies when it comes to jobs, with the most significant jobs in a crisis situation normally being rated as “low standard”).
I can’t help but wonder, in a situation of crisis, what is it that stays really in our hands to do? What is in the sphere of our control and what is out of it? When it comes to things we can’t control - like decisions of the government, how others feel or react, time of this quarantine, available products in the supermarket – we are not able to influence them. However, they occupy our mind. But focusing on these worries will not help us effectively change things. Here comes the invitation to cultivate acceptance and resilience, to take time to reflect on how can our life be more sustainable, to focus of the essential things that can we can do our collective and individual good.
When it comes to our sphere of control, we can think about the things that we can do to support our physical, emotional and mental well-being. This can involve decisions of what to shift the attention towards, how to take care of ourselves and welcome every emotion and sensation, what activities can bring us relief and joy, how we can connect with others, how we can support the community in the given circumstance. We have the time to observe ourselves with kindness, to give time for our longings. Many times, although it’s easy to say we can choose our reactions and focus points, it might feel like even that goes out of control. What I am learning is to accept even when that occurs. To be kind and not judge the things that emerge, like unexpected emotional reactions, sensitivity towards certain things. Although it’s not an easy lesson, it brings every time more liberation. I experience it on my own skin and it’s a tough lesson for my ever-protective inner critic who sends thunders of guilt down my spine whenever I overreact to something.
But just like in the poem, with the acceptance of the wounds and the unfolding of things, something inside of us can blossom in this inner journey.
Just as you, I don’t know what collective changes this situation will bring. But I have a feeling it’s an invitation for a necessary inner journey for us all. It’s a moment when we can stop and reflect, learn to accept and develop resilience inside ourselves.
“We sit on a huge picnic blanket in a park right next to the 16th-century defensive wall. It is my last day here in Lecce. My dear sister has gathered her flatmates to give me a workshop on how to properly prepare the friselle. I take the slice of crispy durum wheat bread and soak it in lukewarm water. Then drip some olive oil on it and add sliced cherry tomatoes, sprinkle some sea salt and dried oregano on top. Friselle is a distinctive element of Southern Italy’s culinary traditions which origins are ancient. When dried this seamen’s bread could be kept for a long time during the sailing trips overseas. Simple, but a hearty meal!” - 11.03.2020
Salve! I am the sister of Vulcanicamente’s volunteer Epp whose posts you have already read here before. The unexpected new virus caused a cancellation of my project in Italy, but gifted me a chance to spend two weeks with my sibling instead. Little did I know that it will also cause a flight cancellation by the airline, some stress and a new ticket costing more than a fortune while postponing my return to Estonia. But here I am today - back at home, in the nature reserve while putting down my memories…
Epp took me out for a cup of cappuccino di soia on my very first morning in Lecce. While enjoying the sunrays, chatting and melting Estonian blackcurrant chocolate on our tongue, my face recognition radar’s alarm went off when I saw a familiar face that later turned out to be an Estonian lady living in the same city. A warm coincidence which led to even warmer experiences later.
We are both foodies who allow our taste buds to be tickled frequently. In every city, country, continent the local plant based part of the cuisine will be examined thoroughly. Epp took me to her favourite pizza place in the old town, made sure I had a try of all the local sweet pastry varieties, bought me many kg of taralli and provided me meals with the fresh, local veggies, greens, legumes and pasta. I really love the Apulian way of cooking - using what the sea and soil have to offer and cooking with fresh, local and seasonal produce. Fresh from the field and sun-ripened guarantees an intense flavor experience. Simple, but amazing!
Morning walks to favourite neighbouring street merchant’s - Lele or Enzo.
...and longer bike rides to outdoor markets.
A small shop in Locorotondo selling legumes, candy and crackers.
Garnering wine to deal with the lockdown, hahaha. & Studying local birds while Epp is working at La Feltrinelli.
“A wanderer” might be given as a middle name for the both of us. Endless wanderings that are never really planned throughout are what we love to do in new environments. Wandering in wild nature or just discovering every corner of an old town or an urban jungle is fascinating: randomly picked cityline took us to the most wild spot near Lecce - Le Cesine Nature Reserve; Epp’s dear friends took us to the seaside near Torre Rinalda by car; an Italian friend Aldo joined us on a trekking day at Porto Selvaggio. And the sweetest couchsurfer Fabio, who we met through the Estonian lady I mentioned before, offered us the seats during his car trip to Grotta di Castellana, Alberobello and Locorotondo. Plus the nightly walks around the calm and magnificent old town. Two weeks were full of adventures that even Epp was surprised by and grateful for.
Wandering in San Cataldo and Le Cesine Nature Park.
Torre Rinalda - Bosco e paludi di Rauccio - Torre Chianca
Porto Selvaggio - Santa Caterina
Grotta di Castellana - Alberobello - Locorotondo
I got to experience many contrasts, but witness the sweet side of the local living as well. Two weeks is enough to fall in love, but never enough to say I have seen it all.
Hello folks here is Karina :) I was supposed to make a blog post about an aspect of my personal life as a volunteer so I decided to share with you an artistic project that is very dear to me and that I have been nurturing alongside my ESC project. These months spent in Lecce inspired me to develop what I had in mind for quite a while. Here’s how the story goes :D
I started to explore jewellery art roughly two years ago, experimenting with different materials. For a while it never got further that clumsy experiments I was doing in my free time. Yet I encountered a state of bliss and relief that seemed to stay with me. But as they say, all things come at the right time. The environment in Lecce nurtured my desire to create more. In warm days, the streets of the city are filled with jewellery artists exposing their wonderful works. And passing by, the artist inside of me was tempted. Seeing what the hand can create gave me a strong incentive to pursue my passion.
So then I made the small but important next step and went to the ironmonger to buy copper wire of different dimensions, and tried to create whatever came to my mind. It was a pretty playful process and it made me genuinely happy. Then a lot of favorable circumstances appeared in my way, as little signs encouraged me to create further. A friend of mine who was making jewellery and was pretty skilled with wire wrapping showed me some small tricks that were a good starting point. On a warm summer day I exposed some of my jewellery and dream catchers next to his, in Porto Selvaggio (a wonderful seaside area in Salento). This place marked a new beginning. Exposing my stuff was a random experiment, but it gave me a lot of courage. I still remember those days sitting by the sea and creating as the day went by...
Later on a couchsurfer came to our home and it turned out she was also a jewellery artist, so we exchanged skills and ideas and exposed jewellery on the street. Another day, a friend randomly brought me some colorful feathers, just in the moment when I was wondering where to find them. Nature also seemed to be in my favor, providing me with materials. I discovered a street full of jacaranda trees, tall trees that have their origin in South American but also grow in some mediterranean ares. And you may wonder what this has to do with jewellery making. It turned out these trees became one of my key resource providers. The seedpods of these trees (that you can see in the picture below), resembling leaves, are resistant enough to make beautiful earrings and pendants.
If some time ago finding beautiful materials without a little hole for hanging was an impediment, wire wrapping seemed to solve it. I could wrap copper wire basically around everything that I found in nature and was good for jewellery. So I started to collect resources for my handicraft from wherever I go, inviting the nature into the space. Seeds, stones, seedpods, little pine cones, shells, even cinnamon sticks, all of these are resources that the nature generously offers.
In the last months, jewellery making has been a significant part of my daily life.
It means to me more than I even thought it would. Creating these objects, feeling the materials taking form in my hands, this brings me in a blissful state of flow, when hours can pass by without me even noticing. To me it’s a meditation, bringing me back to the present moment, teaching me the lesson of patience and attention. As any type of art, it is a way to express what lays inside me. What I create is the reflection of what I feel in the moment, a way to transmit what's meaningful to me. I notice that the surroundings have incredible impact on the way my pieces turn out. Forms are created and transformed in the process, as I am learning to accept the flow of ideas, to not be attached to a defined shape but rather let myself experience. While I discover how the creative process changes for me as I change space and materials I use, I am realizing how much it matters to share the stories of objects with others. Our ancestors living in tribes recognized long ago that objects carry with them the energy of places and people. Jewellery art it as an amazing way to share stories with people, telling them about the creative process and the meaning behind every piece. An interesting conversation can start talking about the meaning of your gemstone.
Making jewellery seemed to be the point where my love for nature and urge to create met, a beautiful blend of contemplation, handicrafts and storytelling.
Putting all ideas together, my jewellery travelled to the online space. I created an online shop on Etsy - KaraKunda - and an instagram page where I am sharing my creations and the their stories. So if you are curious about natural jewellery and their stories, you can read more about my artistic project on these links above. Just an interesting fun fact about the name of the shop, KaraKunda actually translates as "Kara creates", with the word "kunda" having its origins in Swahili language and Kara being my lifelong nickname.
As the name says, I made space for my creative endeavor. In some months I had enough pieces to go to the sustainable Christmas market in Lecce. This was a really meaningful step for me and I am grateful for having this chance. It's heart-warming to see people's curiosity for a piece created by your hand. If you are an artist I know you deeply feel me right now.
I could go on forever talking about jewellery. But I prefer to let the objects and their stories do the talk. I am just saying this, if the artist inside of you is screaming, listen to that voice that wants to create. You might not make a fortune in two days, but it will bring a lot of joy to your heart and for sure people will be inspired, too. :)
I came to Italy to challenge myself by being far away from the situations, people, environment which are so familiar and comfy for me. Main plan is to step out of the comfort zone or conquer my fears! Through this also to discover myself more.
Four months have passed and I don’t really feel that being away from home and loved ones has been a huge challenge. Not surprised, since I am quite quickly adaptive when it comes to changing my living environment.
I could say that every place on earth has it’s own advantages. That way I can’t compare my life in Nordic country with the life I live here in South-Italy. I’m used to be connected with nature, which plays a big role in balancing myself, both mentally and physically. That is why as closer the Christmas holidays came, I figured it is a perfect time to satisfy my yearning for nature by travelling more north - Central Italy was my destination. My roomies - Paola and Karina used the opportunity to go home and visit their family. Yasin also chose to go on an adventure. For me it was time to ground myself and instead of going home, I decided to be and travel alone.
We are used to being social creatures who benefit from interacting with others, but we forget to spend time with ourselves, being alone with our thoughts and without social distractions. And in silence.
After being very social for a while, I become mentally overwhelmed. That feeling is an alert to act, otherwise I will eventually "collapse". I used to have negative thoughts, emotions and bad moods, while feeling overwhelmed. In time I got to know how to read those signs and how to take care of myself. After returning I am like a new and better version of myself - recovered, energized and maybe even better in communicating. Being alone with my thoughts helps to clear the mind - brings more clarity to messy thoughts. Also brings new ideas and solves some problems. For me it means being disconnected from social media too.
So, after spending cozy Christmas Eve with my dear friends in Lecce...
I took the train to more north in search of a colder weather and signs of autumn (or winter). I found it and even more than I expected! I found myself alone in the middle of silence and trees, together with birdsong and my thoughts - in Passignano sul Trasimeno. I had plenty of time to spend with myself.
Unbelievable, how only one day of trekking in mountainous area can affect one's senses... I detected myself in euphoria, while being 11 hours actively on move. My whole body was full of contentment.
After spending enough time with myself I felt more balanced and it was time to connect with new people.
I found myself living in Perugia for a week, like a local. Hours of endless wanderings in urban area, which led me to the narrowest streets, where I could imagine how the life was in the Medieval times. ...to the streets where street art is like temporary exhibition, some canvases are changing in time, some stay the same. ...to the places where you can warm yourself up with the reggae vibes by dancing with local African community or having wineful moments in a bar with vintage and Japan kind of vibe. ...to the expanses of gigantic churches, which seemed like castles. ...to the most beautiful panoramic views of the city, where you can enjoy the sunsets. ...to the streets, walking up and down throughout the day, where you could feel that if you would faint, there would be no ending when rolling down. ...to the places to taste the best hot chocolate, castagna, pizza. ...to the underground Christmas market, where you can meet many wonderful artisans exposing their handwork. ...to the museum where getting to know more about Etruscan story and art. ...to the urban greenery, city farm, permagarden, stream and bamboo field...
Narrow streets in Perugia
Artisans in underground Christmas market - Rocca Paolina
It would have been such a pity to start this New Year by going back to south without visiting Firenze, when I’m only a two hour train ride away. Thought about it & acted!
Irrespective of the masses of tourists rushing around, I managed to take all from this two day visit.
Hours of art therapy while witnessing all those paintings from 15.-18. century. Memorable meetings with locals. Mindful moments with food and wine. Observing architecture, buildings, ceilings, sculptures, people around until my neck hurts...
Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore
Found some vegan places for proper meals and sweets - tiramisu, vegan cheese...
Street art in Firenze - CLET
It’s a period of the year when I am returning into myself, a time for introspection, reflection and understanding. This month’s post kind of fits this mood. I am going to share with you some reflections on the practices that create transformation into my life and that are an integral part of the Vulcanicamente philosophy: meditation and mindfulness.
A moment of silence… One moment in a day when the noise of the outer world stops and I return to the inner world, just letting it be, becoming an observer of what is there; celebrating this moment of silence, breathing deeply and letting go of everything that doesn’t serve me; arriving into the space where I lay or sit, observing it with its sounds, colors, smells, energy. Shifting my attention to the breath, observing where it stops, observing the changes that take place in my body; simply being, being there with no result to be achieved, with no expectation, but rather with a gentle intention to offer this gift of silence when I need it; observing the thoughts that come in the mind, observing how fast they come sometimes, jumping from one topic to the other in an unstoppable frenzy, many times charged with judgment too, and being aware that now is the time to let them go like clouds; noticing the emotions present, recognizing them, accepting that they are there; trying not to judge them; remembering that we are not a thought, or an emotion, and that those are just visitors that come and go. And allowing myself to do nothing and simply be in the present moment.
Meditation is a simple, yet so meaningful practice. My journey to integrating this practice into my daily life started some months ago, in one Youth Exchange organized by Vulcanicamente, when I took part in the morning meditations facilitated by Malte, one of the participants. At the end of the youth exchange he encouraged us to write a promise to ourselves that we would meditate every day, even for some minutes, for 21 days in a row. I had already experienced the blissful meditative state before, but that moment was perfect for setting an intention to do it on a daily basis. It didn’t stop after 21 days, it became a practice I ever since tried to integrate more and more into my daily life, in a form or another. In the beginning it requires discipline. In the rush of task, thoughts, duties, it seems to be hard to find a moment to allow ourselves a time or silence. It’s absurd to think we find time for so many other things, but oftentimes find it hard to dedicate even a short moment to our peace of mind.
So what meditation taught me is to preserve a time for self-relaxation, awareness and silence, to allow it to myself even for some minutes. I learned how precious this time is, how much empowerment and bliss there is only in the act of deliberately setting this time for myself. By doing that I learned to listen more to what the body or emotional state are trying to tell me. There are moments when I feel the need to stay silent. This is a pretty new thing to me. I have always been pretty talkative. But there are moments when I realize I want to stay in silence for some hours or a day or so, when I decide to not speak, but only actively listen, without reacting in a verbal way. This is such an insightful experience, making me reflect about how oftentimes responses that we give are actually automatic and how much energy those responses take. Silent days are a good exercise.
Active listening is one lesson that meditation taught me, a very important one. Another one is that meditation can be integrated within all the things we do, when we do them with presence: walking, eating, washing the dishes, cleaning, studying, working, taking a shower, writing, hugging, cooking a meal. An experience like cooking, which is a thing we do as part of our routine, becomes so much meaningful when done in presence. Eating with awareness (or mindful eating) is a journey of gratitude towards the food in your plate and whoever contributed into allowing it to get to you. This is what Cristian, our mindful chef, taught me during a silent mindful dinner experience in one of our youth exchanges. When things are done with awareness, the perspective is changing.
Meditation brings back the feeling of oneness so long forgotten, the feeling that there is no separation between all the components of the Earth (plants, animals, humans, winds, waters, fields, soil, fire). That brings the realization that we are all part of this ecosystem and we are here to spread our nurturing generative energies. Meditation awakens generosity, care and appreciation for all beings on Earth, for all natural surroundings.
I am at the beginning of a journey full of growth, learning, awareness, light and compassion. And I am deeply grateful for the opportunity that Vulcanicamente gave me to get closer to meditation practices, so that now I can find different ways to cultivate them. The nice thing is that I don’t do these practices only by myself: meditation and well-being practices are part of our weekly meetings; this is how we start the week. They are an essential thematic approached during our youth projects, inspiring youngsters to be more connected with themselves and nature. Gathering to meditate or do mindfulness practices together creates a deep feeling of community between us. Maybe one day through one of our activities or workshops you will have the chance to be part of it too and experience this blissful feeling on your own skin Until then, I leave you with an invitation to allow the time and space for yourself, for whatever brings you inner peace and helps your mind to take a rest, for whatever brings you back to the present moment. Namaste!
Near Zero Waste - not some kind of trend to follow, but the way to live, to feel better and care about the environment
Considering that European Week of Waste Reduction will start in next week, within which we will also organize activities for four full days, I would like to concentrate on less consuming and waste reduction, as a part of my everyday life living in Lecce.
When thinking about waste reduction... for me it starts with my daily habits and the way of thinking. Heading to Italy for ten months, with all the things in my suitcase, I also carried my daily habits to adapt them according to the environment.
I have only lived here for two months and have been fortunate enough to already discover service providers that can support my choices of consuming. That means a variety of fresh and local fruits, veggies, baked goods, nuts and seeds in bulk and natural washing liquids - all in my own reusable containers or shopping bags. I hope I can inspire you to go and look around your city and to do the same!
So how did I find the right shops and markets? It is utterly easy - just open your eyes to find and mouth to ask!
Many places for fresh, seasonal and local fruits and vegetables I found just only a 5 min. walk from our apartment. The goods are not packed, so I can use my own reusable bags.
Of course I have also checked out the bigger groceries stores and have found some options there as well - some nuts, beans, chickpeas etc in bigger containers which means you can buy them in bulk and use your own container. Sadly, you can find some weirdest things on the shelves of the supermarkets, for ex. pre-cut pineapple on a polyurethane plate wrapped into layers and layers of single use plastic. Even though in Italy, the shops are not allowed to use single use plastic bags, they still insist you to use a biodegradable one and don’t take no for an answer. Then we as consumers are left with the bag which we can at least use for our organic waste at home.
My favourite place, an ecological shop Biobottega I found through googling, of course. There are many smaller eco-shops as well, but this is the biggest and the best. The service is awesome - they even weigh your containers for you. Here you can buy dishwashing and laundry liquids in bulk and also cut your own preferable size soap bar.
Market is the keyword! For ex. Mercato Bisettimanale. We found it only 3 km bike ride away, through the city, so not far. It takes place every Monday and Friday morning. I usually buy bigger amounts of nuts, grains, beans, tarallini etc. and use my own package. The biggest second hand/vintage market is also here! Clothes with prizes starting from 0.5-3€.
My way of living is near zero waste. I try to only produce organic waste and avoid single use plastics, metals, cartons etc.
The most difficult part is plastic packaging. Even though I will leave the products packed in plastic on the shelves while shopping, I can not avoid them in coffee-shops where they serve a cup of water with my coffee. So coffee goes in a ceramic cup, but water is in plastic! What? Also, sometimes it is hard to explain myself on the markets and in bakeries. When I’m showing my own bag to cashier, they still put my things into single use bag. Luckily I finally have some words in my Italian vocabulary, so I can handle the situations and refuse the offer. Currently, I’m on a mission and slowly succeeding in a bakery shop where I would like to buy pizzo in my own reusable bag. At least they put it in a paper bag for now...
Organic waste is also waste. We do sort it separately, but the main thing is to avoid food being wasted. It is important to buy enough, but not too much so the only organic waste would be the scraps, not the edible part itself. We sometimes organize collective lunch at our apartment during which we use all the leftovers from the fridge. I have also experienced dumpster diving which means consuming products that are not as valuable for shops anymore.
A fun way to help reduce other people’s waste is to build a new bicycle using old parts of broken bikes. Someone’s unwanted bike is someone else’s new best friend. Ciclofficina helped us pimp our rides.
In Estonia, where I come from, the waste management is pretty ok, I think. We have many sorting options that are also mandatory for apartment buildings and companies. We can even turn in beverage bottles and get money back from that. Still, I think there are a lot of ignorant people or just a lack of knowledge, so I can still see organic waste in plastic bags etc. We have a recyclable paper mill and biowaste station and I am aware of the system here.
In Italy, I was amazed by the waste sorting system. Every apartment has their own box for the metal and glass, plastic, carta, organic and secco waste. And every weekday is for different bin to take out on the street. For example on Friday evening you take out the organic’s bin and on Saturday morning the garbage truck will collect them all. Over time I would like to know how the waste management is organised here, in which places our sorted waste will end up and what they make out of it.
During the next 8 months… step by step, every day, I will be discovering new options and trying to change something new in my daily consuming here in Lecce. The main aim is to reduce packages, to avoid it or recycle it and share knowledge and inspire with my actions.
Tips for you! Bring your own cup, spoon, lunch box and some reusable bags (paper, plastic net, cotton, silicone) with you and you will start to notice the decrease of your own waste.
The more you start to pay attention and think about your moves (what or how you are consuming), the more you start to care about the environment around you. And you will realise that these items are not that heavy burden to carry around in your bag! :)
Greetings from Epp!
.. My life as a volunteer
Most people wonder what it is or how to be a volunteer.
My adventure starts from Cyprus which is a hot island, where the summer never ends. My journey was incredible, full of moments but from a second thought, I wanted to try something different, maybe that would make a difference, so I decided to be part of Erasmus+ organisation and trying through our new generation to have a co-working with new people who really like what are doing so … I apply through VulcanicaMente website
Italy… such a beautiful country! Well, of course being stressed because of my new life but enthusiastic, so in the evening of my arrival day I met the different volunteers of this project, happy moments to meet people who think like you. It makes it easier.
Next day, we met with our coordinators, ‘Hanna, Sara and Jacopo’ time for work! Oh no wait we just arrived .. just joking! After a few moments … They make an atmosphere suitable for all of us and ... I felt myself in a comfortable conversation, an introduction of who we are, what we do, what we want and how we can achieve goals..
By sharing moments, thoughts, food make our experience smoothly, kind and in this environment is to feel lucky at least, especially when you are in a team like our with Yasin, Epp and Karina.
My life in Italy particularly (Lecce) is full of surprises, people are kind and willing to help, although their culture request a lot of time to discover and understand.
All good things come to an end. So our EVS project "SPEAK IT - PLAY IT!'' was completed. Time passed quickly and imperceptibly. As i remember now, the first time i couldn’t open the office door with a key, but now i can do it with my eyes closed. This year was full of activities, meditations, lunches together, travel's and promotional campaigns for young people from Salento. Watch our final video. #SVE #ERASMUS+