Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Living with flatmates

All the EVS in Kalamata have to live with flatmates either 11 either 7 (depending of the house).

This is something positive because you will not feel alone, especially during your first weeks when you're nothing but lost and dizzy. Sharing your flat is also an opportunity to discover other ways of life (type of food, eating time, daily habits, musics...). You have people to talk to all the time. If you want to go out there is always someone who will be happy to come with you. Watching movies all together, cooking, sharing food, morning talks or fascinating late nights talks...are some examples of the positive side of sharing your flat.

Living with many other people requiere communication, cooperation, be careful to respect the others' rights, dealing with differences.... Many skills you will improve during your time here.

But living under the same roof can be tough. It might drive you crazy for numerous reasons due to yourself, due to the huge differences between each others, due to *fill the blank with your personal experience of flatsharing*

When there is an umbalance between all the positive sides of this way of life and the negative, when the negative are making you forget the positive ones here is something that might help you (it worked for me):

Take a deep breath, watch these talks and enjoy again the community life ;)


Tuesday, January 16, 2018

We went to Monemvasia and it was cool. Because we are cool.

This is water

I don't know how many times I heard this speech; I don't know how many friends I showed it to. I know that I remember the day I first heard it, the friend that shared it with me. I heard it several times in a row: I didn't want to miss not even one small thing. I still listen to it every now and then. 

My time here is ending. Slowly I start to put things in perspective and I ask myself what was my purpose here, and how to communicate it to my colleges, and future EVS. I can start by the beginning, way before EVS, with David Foster Wallace words.  

This is a speech in a graduation ceremony of a liberal arts university course. Instead of presenting a nice "congratulations" speech, Foster Wallace underlines the human value of education and goes to the bottom of that should it be: a tool that allows us to learn how to think and to choose what to think about. For me, this is the true meaning of all education, but even more of non-formal education. 

If you are here, as I am, you have the tools. You can choose to choose, to be aware, to go beyond your default settings. You might not be able to choose the water, but you can choose to see it or not; you can choose how to see it. Your way, our way from now on it a matter of choice, OUR choice. 

This is what, this is water. 

Note: there is a full version of this speech that I highly recommend you to listen.