My name is Alba Requejo Hernández and I am a 23 year old graduate in International Relations with Translation and Interpreting by the Pontifical University of Comillas in Madrid. When I was little, I went to a British school close to my small town. I was raised enjoying simultaneously the Spanish and English cultures and languages. Since there were students from around the world, I started to benefit from cultural diversity at an early start. My school friends and acquaintances were from all around the globe and my teachers were not Spanish like the rest of the people I knew at that young age outside of the School perimeter. This might be part of the reason to why I have always felt the need to be in a culturally diverse environment. Of course, I discovered this older, when I felt that sense of comforting peace when living abroad experiences and having international encounters.
After highschool, I decided to pursue my studies on international relations to fulfill my curiosity regarding the world beyond Spain (generally speaking) and how it worked. Besides, I thought that translating and interpreting were two key tools in the process of acquiring cultural understanding and mediating between cultures. The fact of living a year abroad also influenced my decision to enroll in this degree. This is how in 2014 I traveled to Australia where I lived for a year where I attended to University. When I came back, I decided to continue combining my national studies with international experiences. The next year I decided to work for the summer months at an online languages’ platform based in Ghent. I loved to feel part of a broad world and a new culture. Besides of the locals, I became good friends with a Turkish, a Bulgarian and an Italian. I also covered my international dose the following summers: I went to an English camp in Ireland and I decided to try something new and live in a farm in the beautiful region Pays de la Loire in France. The routine there was different to anything I had done before: feeding rabbits and pigs, recollecting prunes, helping with the cooking for wedding events, cutting of bad herbs and speaking in French (trying at least) and English with the other volunteers.
When I read about the opportunity of promoting the cultural heritage of a Săcueni, a small town in Romania, my eyes gleamed with hope as I started to think of the ways to reflect in the cover letter my willingness to contribute to this EVS project. I had never taken part in a cooperation and volunteer project on terrain before, but I had been long thinking of the idea of participating in one. Besides, Romania called my attention as a completely remote culture to that Western-like-world that I have been surrounded by up to today. So I landed in Cluj-Napoca 2 days ago and I caught a train to Oradea where I was picked up by my coordinator and my volunteering colleagues. See, when I arrived to that -0 cold it is not a problem when there is human quality that keeps you warm and when the snow tints with an extra white sparkling charm the landscapes. I am thrilled to live the volunteer experience in this village of vibrant uniqueness and to continue learning from what will come.
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