Buongiorno, buonasera e buonanotte!

In a period of farewells, of departures and new beginnings for many of us, even I am on the move. Well ok, I’m just returning to my island for few weeks to vote and get suntanned, but I will unashamedly use the space offered by our blog to write my own farewell letter to this association (hey, I wasn’t even the first one to do so! Check out what Alissa did a semester ago). If you know me, in person or even just for my pieces, you may even enjoy what follows, if not…well stay tuned anyway, we are gonna bring you a new piece just tomorrow and the final Abroad issue in two weeks!

Speaking of the Abroad…you know, after having been in the Abroad Committee – pardon, now JoCo! –  for almost a year and a half, I have the feeling that I probably I don’t have much more to say. Except…

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Behold: the very first picture I’ve ever taken in Utrecht!

I have never been so much of a planner. I made my mind up about where to go for my master abroad just shy of a month before the actual date of departure. Utrecht eventually won its contest against the other candidate cities, and I arrived here exactly the 27th of August 2014. As probably many of you, I came without an apartment and any known face around, but this never struck me as a major problem. The most natural thing I could do was to join the local ESN section. After all, I did so in Reykjavik, for my Erasmus, and once back in Cagliari for two more years. Oh boys, what a life-changing experience has this association been.

I am grateful for everything that I had the honour to receive from ESN. It has simply allowed my Erasmus to continue for an almost uninterrupted span of five years. It gave me the chance to use and practise approximately 4-5 languages; to get in touch and learn from some dozens of different cultures; and more importantly, to meet some hundreds of amazing people. It’s not an overstatement if I say it did change my very view of the world.

I mean, yeah it did make me realise also that some common places about certain ethnicities are ultimately true – sorry but yes, Italians are indeed the best cooks, Germans are the best workers, and Icelanders are…well a bit cold. However, for so many other aspects, I had to review completely my opinions or even prejudices. I found out, and I hope you will forgive me for the banality, that there are not such a thing as nationalities superior to others. There are just people, good and bad, pleasant and unpleasant, more easy going ones and more serious ones. The best you can do is stick to those which make you laugh – and if you end up in bed with one of them, that’s a bonus.

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So, in a very Oscar-acceptancee-speech fashion, I thank all those people who made this adventure so epic, in Utrecht, but ideally also in Reykjavik and Cagliari. I hope you will all stick to this association, even when you return in your home-countries if possible, cause it’s seriously a lot of fun. And If we never meet again…well no one is perfect.

A si biri pringius,

Claudio

 

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