I arrived in Poznan almost two weeks ago and I think I am starting to get used to this place that nobody of my family and friends in Barcelona knew before. Neither do I. I will stay here for the whole year so I can imagine that I will have time to love this city but also to hate it. However, at the moment we are just meeting each other. Without prejudices nor looking desperately for the great beauty in every corner, in every cafe or horse shit freshly baked.
At first sight, I am pretty sure I am going to get on well with Polish people. They are quite shy at the beginning but, I would say, happy that you decided to come here. And, at the same time, very surprised that someone in her right mind makes the decision of changing the sunny Barcelona for the rainy unpredictable Poznan. But we, Mediterranean people, should learn to depend less on weather. Rainy days can be beautiful after all. Anyway, I am not searching the great beauty as an obsessed poet, as I said.
The day after my arrival I went to the bureaucratic office (let’s say) which cares on administrative things of my stay but for my well-being too. In One World, they greeted me with a vegan pie just in case. It was weird for me, given that in Spain we are not such considerate with this kind of issues. After this first welcoming party I headed for my real office, Stowarzyszenie Na Rzecz Spółdzielni Socjalnych (Association for Social Cooperatives), where I am going to collaborate as a European Volunteer (EVS). I went there with Aleksandra, my boss and workmate and also the person I was in touch with from the beginning of the process, so I could say I already knew her via Skype, e-mail and so on. While we moved on, she cared about pointing me the route along the way, like in Pulgarcito’s tale (Tom Thumb) he dropped little white stones.
In the middle of the way, she recommended me to buy a hot meal and suggested me specially to taste pierogi, a very typical dish in Poland. We finally arrived at the office and started to have lunch at the work place but without rituals, it doesn’t matter what time is it but only if you are hungry or not. Logical.
Regarding about language, I just confirmed that Polish is very, very difficult so you never know if your flatmate or the person sitting in front of you in the tram are talking bad about you or not. Maybe it’s better this way. In spite of complexity, however, I am going to put a lot of effort in learning this Slavic language also because, as I said, I really think Poznanians and I will get along well.
By the way, I recommend very much the Italian film La Grande Bellezza (The Great Beauty), directed by Paolo Sorrentino and which has won the best foreign language film Oscar this year.