Words cannot express how much I am thankful for the Erasmus+ student mobility opportunity In Bulgaria for three months. I faced a different environment outside my home country. It feels like a rollercoaster of emotions, including excitement, fear, joy, tearfulness, etc. Varna University of Management will forever hold a special place in my heart. Thanks to them, I was able to show my talents, skills, and capabilities in front of helpful and approachable professors, staff, and friends from different countries.
In the beginning, I faced different situations which are challenging for me to adjust to regarding language barriers, weather, environment, and the cultural beliefs of the locals. Some people, especially the seniors, do not know how to speak English, so I need to make alternatives like hand movements, coordinating with google translate, and many more to understand each other. Regarding the weather, I was very excited to experience a snowy season since it does not exist in my country. At first, we had lots of fun playing in the snow, but as time went on, it became a hassle for us to walk while carrying heavy groceries due to the strong wind. Now I understand why fewer people are going outside the comforts of home than during the spring and summer. Overall, I am still happy and contented to feel the cold breeze. Many challenging situations have happened, but they did not hinder me from adapting to the environment and local’s beliefs.
During these three months, the best part is still meeting new people with different cultural backgrounds. I made friends, and we shared basic languages. My Bulgarian friends taught me the phrase: Dobur Den (Good afternoon), Zdrasti (Hello), bátko (Older brother), and káka (Older sister). Also, they roamed us around Dobrich, Bulgaria, and its history since it is part of their English class to present in front of the people who have a different nationality. Furthermore, I also made new friends from France, Spain, Croatia, Finland, Uzbekistan, Italy, Zimbabwe, Japan, Ukraine, and even Filipinos from different islands. Up until now, we are still communicating and showing love, support, and care to one another, building our connection and friendship.
Overall, this Erasmus+ Student Mobility allowed me to discover an extravagant area and individuals with different cultures, which is an opportunity for me to explore as a tourism student. Also, it made me improve myself in general on how I can handle various things on my own and how I can react to them positively. This program exceeded my expectation with great appreciation.
GONZALES, Lord Gabriel R.