Hi, my name is Pauline, I’m 22 years old and I come from France. Today, I would like to tell you about my 2 months of experience in Thessaloniki. I arrived on the 8th of October after a long day of travel. At my arrival in the house, I met the others volunteer with who I had to live and work for the next 2 months. For the first time in my life, I left my house, my family, my friends. I had never lived with other people than my parents before. And curiously, I didn’t feel sadness or something else like that to not be with them for this duration because from the beginning of my volunteering, I felt fine and happy. The other volunteers arrived almost at the same time as me, so we all met together at the same time too. French, Portuguese, Spanish, Italian, Slovak, Hungarian, Brazilian, Latvian, Bulgarian, Turkish, Polish, Uruguayan, Northern Macedonian, a lot of nationality in one house. It’s very interesting to live with so many people came from a lot of countries. Even if we are all very different, that’s finally what makes us an united group.
About the city, in my opinion, Thessaloniki is a good place to live for a volunteering. If you like to be in an alive city, Thessaloniki is for you. If it’s not and if you love nature, go away. Nature is not very present, but there are a lot of places where you can feel fine even if there is a lot of pollution and waste product in the city. And if you are a food lover, you could easily find many good and cheap places to eat.
And if you love animals like cats and dogs, you shouldn’t pay attention to them because there are a lot of them in the street.
My first impression when I had my first meeting at work, was that Greek people are not on time. For me, it was a little bit strange because we couldn’t see that situation in France. One time maybe, but not every day. After that, Greek people are very nice to foreigners and speak really good english. And if you have the opportunities to learn a little bit of Greek, you will see that they will be happy if you tell them something in Greek, even if it’s only one word.
During those two months, I had some opportunities to visit other places in Greece. I went to Afytos, a little village in Kassandra. I went to Edessa to see the waterfalls and to Pozar for the natural thermal baths. It was nice. I went on a trip Meteora with ESN, visited three monasteries in the mountains. It was very beautiful. If you have the chance to go there, just go! All those places are magnificent.
I would like to come back here again in a few months to see other places in Greece and to catch up with all the people that I met here. Thanks to all of them and thank to my Greek mentor Sofia and my French coordinator Rossella from Parcours le Monde. It’s thanks to them I was able to come to Greece.