My six months in Barcelona

This post is also available in: Español (Spanish) English

I arrived in Barcelona six months ago as part of a volunteering program. When I think back to the moment I was at the airport in Budapest, I had some thoughts that made me lose my mind, I’m not normal. I’m not normal, because, without zero knowledge of the language, I’m on the road. Foreign culture, foreign language, foreign situations and of course loneliness. But other than that, I was excited and curious. What are the Spanish people like? Are they really as friendly as I’ve heard? Is there really such an acceptance of gay people in the country? When I was six I listened to music from a Spanish band a lot. From the Gipsy Kings. I still love and still love their music. It has always been my dream to go to Spain. Well done. . Now, I want to explain what the six months have been and how I have stood up to these challenges. I want to write about what I learned from my organization during my volunteering at the organization where I am.

The first two or three weeks were heaven itself. Divine sunshine, warm weather and an amazing city. I remember the joy of having a street full of palm trees. My first days at the organization were pretty good. It is true that communication was quite difficult as I do not speak any other language than my mother tongue. The very first day I was introduced to the staff, guided around the offices, and then I received a larger packet of information about the organization in pdf format and read through google what exactly the organization is doing and what its segments are. He was very sympathetic and also the fact that the activities of the organization deal with almost every area of ​​life. Health, work, volunteering, legal advice, use of computers and more. I have attended many events held by the organization. Unfortunately, the whole thing was in Spanish, so I didn’t understand anything, but you could feel in the air that these events were for us, for the Roma. I think my Roma identity has gained stability here. I learned to be proud of being a Roma.

In September, I started exploring the sights of the city, and I was down on the beach. This month was about independence and learning how to manage money. I didn’t get too much spending money and had to learn to cook for myself and schedule it. I think I have fully mastered it. After September, there was a camp in October. I was very scared because I did not speak the language and I was afraid that I would not be able to make friends, talk and that I would hinder the progress of the group. However, I was very disappointed because my life was the hardest, but it was also the best week. They were very friendly and helped with everything they could. They didn’t leave me alone. We partied, sat down for a beer, learned and talked a lot. Here we managed to establish lifelong friendships.

The third month appeared as an emotion of homesickness. There were mornings when I woke up crying because I wanted to go home. I missed my family, my friends, and, of course, lacked the convenience of being able to handle things comfortably so that I could speak my native language. Then somehow it was gone. I thought back to how successful this camp was, that I could successfully buy, that I deal with banking,
I complained about it in Media Markt without language skills. During my stay here, he also succeeds at university. And in many areas of my life, I have learned to express my needs and represent my interests.

If I think back and have to say what I’ve learned in these six months, language is not an obstacle. I learned to be alone, manage my money, cook for myself, make friends, open up to people, managed to undress from my social inhibition.
I’m grateful for this journey. After all, it was the hardest and most beautiful time of my life. New friends, experiences, new culture, new language.
I think I’m more of him. There is a little Spanish identity built into the personality.

This article has been written by our ESC volunteer Orbán.

Project number: 2018-1-ES02-ESC11–012582

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