EVS prostovoljka Liisi je del CZM ekipe že dobrih 5 mesecev. V aprilu nas je presenetila z Estonsko večerjo, na kateri je bila miza polna tradicionalnih estonskih jedi – krompir, solata s kislo smetano in “kotleti”.
V prvem prispevku je z nami delila utrinke iz svojega življenja, ki so jo pripeljali do odločitve za EVS prostovoljstvo in svoje prve vtise ob odhodu v tujino, tokrat pa lahko spremljate njena opažanja o Sloveniji. Njen prispevek se bo prepletal z utrinki iz Estonske večerje.
Personal observations about Slovenia
Living in another country for over a month, you will start noticing things about the culture and the people: things that are similar and things that are different from your country. Similarities give you some comfort of knowing that you may be not so different from them and that you can belong somewhere. Differences, on the other hand, while being a bit hard to get used to and bizarre, can sometimes seem just funny.
For me, one of the first things that surprised me was the Slovenian way of »going for a walk«. On my first week here, I found myself fighting a losing battle with the snowy hills, while going on a casual walk. I skied on my boots, sliding down the small hills, ending up, to no one’s surprise, on my bottom. Coming from a really flat country without any mountains, I had to accept quickly, that Slovenes usually walk in only one direction: up. Being as sporty as they are, maybe they consider a walk without conquering any hills to be a waste of time or maybe they just enjoy the view or the feeling of accomplishment of arriving on the top. I have yet to discover the answer, but I must say, I have started liking it.
There are many stereotypes about different countries and nations. Popular ones in Estonia include Latvians having six toes, Russians wearing only Adidas clothes and French people eating frogs. After living here for one month, I have already discovered one funny stereotype about the Slovenes: their strong fear of heating up their potato on the next day, fearing it might be poisonous. Coming from a country known internationally for eating mostly only potato, I am not sure if I should just laugh about it or check my pulse to see, if I am still alive after 21 years of eating that severely poisonous second-day potato.
On my first weeks here I had to arrange different documents in order to legally settle in Slovenia. In this period of time I understood two things. Firstly, Slovenes seem to really love papers. I had to fill in an enormous amount of papers with information and codes about myself that I didn’t know even existed. Secondly, every Slovene seems to know each other, or at least that’s how I saw it. I am not sure if the cold weather in Estonia has also made the people colder, but formal conversations in Estonia are usually very straight to the point and emotionless, like we would all have a certain amount of words per day, that we don’t want to exceed, using as little words as possible. Therefore, I got really confused seeing the so-called “formal” conversations here. Not understanding a word of course, I saw all the warm smiles, long conversations and positive emotions and my first assumption was that they all must know each other, because they seemed to be talking about their pets, funny childhood stories or last nights’ TV programs, or at least that is how it looked from my point of view. Later I understood that that is just how people communicate here and I have come to enjoy the friendly formal conversations.