On the last Friday of November we went to Trieste for an event hosted by Exist, about Erasmus, EVS, AISEC, and promoting exchange projects in general. We were there to talk about our EVS experience.
We arrived in time for lunch, which was, of course, eaten in Copacabana with about 30-40 others, most of whom were studying in Trieste on Erasmus, and a few others on EVS or other programmes. We met Ciro, one of last years volunteers at the municipality of Buje, who told us how much everyone in Buje and Brtonigla loved him, though it was clear that he is loved by no-one more than himself.
After lunch we briefly toured Trieste, finding some new places on the way to our B&B (run by a lovely Neopolitan couple). Our guide and host for the evening was Aurora, a previous EVS volunteer in Spain, and working for Exist – an organisation for past EVS volunteers living in Trieste.
At the main event many exaltations of the great opportunities these different programmes offer, and the amazing, life-changing experiences people had.
It wasn’t the most well organised event; the hosts could not decide in which language to speak, and asked the multi-national audience which they would prefer. Unsurprisingly, as most of them spoke English more than Italian, English was requested. Of course, formal announcements had to be in Italian, but it would have been stupid to do everything in Italian, knowing the audience.
During our presentation (or talk – our prepared presentation was not shown with it for some reason) we again spoke about why we were doing EVS, why we had chosen Croatia, and embellished on the activities we are doing (or could do, because we hadn’t done much).
After the presentations there was an international dinner, for which some attendees had prepared traditional dishes, but only Irena had cooked something Macedonian from our group. It started slowly, with just crisps and bread, but quickly picked up. The highlight was the local dish of pork that was baked inside bread.
As most of the attendees knew each other they formed groups and it was difficult to interact and get to know some new people, but there was another group of EVS volunteers, from Pordenone in Italy, who we spoke to, especially as they were staying with us in the B&B, and they included a girl from Leeds, so it was good to hear a Yorkshire accent.
We left as a group and went back to the B&B together because we only had one key, but the group was split as some of us wanted to enjoy Trieste’s night-life (actual people), but Irena and the girls from Pordenone didn’t (understandable because they had been up since 6am). Alessio, Monika, Mathieu (a French guy) and I then went out and found a bar in the old town. Sitting outside, drinking great wine, we were approached by every flower seller that passed, but Monika’s demand for a black rose could not be met.