The road less traveled or my EVS experience

Travelling is suffering?

I was visiting one of my Danish friend I met in the kibbutz and we talked about travelling one of our common passion. He had read somewhere that somehow, travelling is suffering. It’s not easy, it will change you.Maybe not a week of holiday in Hawai (but who knows?) but that’s not what we were thinking of…

Hitch hiking is the prime example, it takes time, you don’t know when you will get to your destination, you have to rely on others and you have to be patient and flexible. It’s really much like my EVS experience.

When I started it we could say I was on the side of the road ready to catch a ride to get to my destination. But I wasn’t alone I had this partner I had never met before, Helena this really awesome woman from Spain. I had just finished another hitch hiking trip in Israel so I was seeing everything behind this israeli glasses that I had forgot to remove. I was making the same sign as in Israel to stop a car but in Europe you use your thumb….We were like Jon Snow,we know nothing!

 

When we were trying to get a car I had something in mind for our direction. I had read in my description I would do something with students, like activities or workshops. However that description was outdated but I still wanted to go there. My friend Helena kept telling me I should try another way but I woudn’t listen, so it was very difficult to get a ride it’s like going to a closed road…not gonna work!

Nobody cares for hitchikers here? So what!

So people would not stop, I felt nobody cares here, why they don’t talk to me why is it so hard to socialise, what is wrong with THEM?

But finally after a month of struggle and not understanding anything on my side of the road some help came up. I had this EVS training in october and the two amazing trainers I met there, Anja and Tobias, gave us a good hand, driving us much further down our way and helping me to understand that the road down there was closed so I could try something else.

I agreed with Helena it was better to be a bit flexible but still all these people were terrible to socialise with. I wasn’t so good myself anymore. Imagine a hitch hiker sitting down on the road that can’t even stand up to get a ride, nobody will stop!

So after complaining going on strike and so one something we French really master, I stand up on my feet, I tried to smile and I also used my thumb to get a car and little by little we would get some ride down the road. When you hitch hike you have different cases, either nobody goes all the way to your place which is often therefore you will take a lot of small ride or you are lucky and someone take you almost all the way down. Our situation was more like the first one.

However we also got better, we were talking with our drivers, taking their advice about how to get further down. So we learnt. For example you don’t socialise the same way in Denmark than in France or in a kibbutz with a bunch of young volunteers. You need to adapt, to be open and really patient. It’s as if Danes are like ice cubes but they don’t melt in the sun, or very very slow. Therefore it will take you time to break the ice! Being too direct, something that could work in Israel quite well, will never do there.

I had never struggle making new relation abroad so I had to change a lot, it was good I realised all the annoying I would do (I observed how my mom was when she was mad, well I was doing the same :) ) and try to change but i wrote about that before

Then I was still unhappy about this road close down there because it’s something I really wanted to do. However talking with colleagues I realised that some other way would be nice to explore. I was there so why not take a chance right? That’s how helena and I started the blog. I am really happy about it and Ana the new volunteer is keeping it going! It’s right here and it’s lovely!

We also decided to write a sign with some direction we would like to go. This way we started to help on the shows that the school was doing, with lights, recording, editing.I tried some ways I have never been before. I really improved my editing, I discovered color grading and had the chance to develop photography, that I really love now.

Another path

Then you become more daring. With Helena we thought we could try some different ways and meet further down. I started to do some more personal projects, especially related to photography.

Finally at the end we met again, we had learnt a lot on our journey together, through a lot of nice and friendly people among the crowd that woudln’t stop. They helped us, we had great time with them and all of them gave us something that we keep for our next trip. It was indeed difficult, it took time, sometimes we would stand under the rain for an hour and another would get a long ride under the sun with very nice Danes. We also learnt the social cues, to use our thumb, learn some Danish to not get lost, be flexible, not judge hastily especially if you don’t want to be judge.

When you hitch hike you do something very different, not some many do it or approve of it so you start with this difference. Well being in a foreign country is very much the same, I was different the day I step a foot in Denmark, but I had forgotten that in Israel because i was different together with 40 different people from abroad! The trick is to keep this difference and use it as a strength, not be scared ,go for it anyway.

Now Helena is in Spain, I am still on the Danish road. I don’t know where I am going but where I am right now is very nice, with really good people that are open and take the time to show me around. Maybe they will start to hitch hike themselves somedays and then I will have given something to them in return :)

The end and the beginning

The last post was quite a while ago. But the past 3 months I have been quite busy. First my EVS has finished then I went to Sweden and France but now I am in Denmark.

May was the last month we had with the students, so we were quite busy with work and feeling the end approaching. The summer was starting so that was really nice, I wasn’t expecting much but it’s pretty nice, a lot of sun a bit like France but not as hot, starting and finishing earlier I would say. With the beach, the lake and the little forest the school look like paradise so that was really nice to be there!

Then in June the students left. We were alone with Helena and some people from the staff the first week. It was quite strange, the school was so empty but we were working a lot and then enjoying, meeting with the neigbours, swimming…It was odd to walk in corridors remembering this year and all the people that came, all the mess they did …

Finally I met with Hanna again! when I say the kibbutz is a life experience it’s not cheesy, I still can’t believe the friends I made there , how weird awesome they are! So I went to Stockolm it was really nice and we had such a nice time at the summer house, swimming in the lake (even my iphone enjoyed the water!) and her family was so nice to me!

The landscape is quite diffeent, a lot of forest but most of all….  it’s not flat! hehe big change from Danmark the flatest country in the world! It’s really peaceful when you go in the nature as well. Otherwise a lot of blondes and people cycling, typical scandinavian country. We spent a whole day baking amazing cinnamon bun and chocolate balls, crêpes also, it was so delicious! We also made quite a show in the modern art museum, miming the paintings, I think the other visitors liked it!

Then, I went back to Denmark and after my last week there working, I finally went back home. But that was a short trip. I had planned already to stay in Denmark, so after a week during when I did absolutely nothing it was time to move to…Samsø.

 

if you haven’t heard about it , well most people haven’t either. It’s the heart chakra of Europe :). The island is exactly at the center of it yes it’s quite funny! There are maybe 3000 inhabitants, and of course more in summertime becuase it’s really beautiful and quite preserved. I have been living the past month and a half in a little house 2 minutes away from the beach, I have an amazing view of the sunset everyday from there. Because it’s an island it’s small but if you don’t have a car it takes a while to go to places so I have cycled a lot everyday to go to work. Overall it has been a nice summer. Plus I didn’t get one but TWO jobs there!

My next plan is to move to Copenhagen. if you haven’t heard it’s quite terrible to find a place to live there, but I will figure it out :) it’s in two weeks so that’s fine!

Look at Sweden it’s so nice :)

One year ago…

Exactly one year ago I landed in Tel Aviv and I was on my way to Bar’am.

My flight was on the 6th at night and my mom called me like 3 times asking me if I was sure I wanted to go because she had heard on the radio something about Syria…But I really wanted to go even though I wouldn’t know until the following where I would live for the next 3 months.

After I left the office I had 5 hours of travel. 5 hours to wonder if I had picked a “good” kibbutz, if I would enjoy it there, if this wasn’t a big mistake after all? But as soon as I met the volunteers it was fine. Better than that actually.

So what happened since?  Where am I now ? What did I get from this?

In the kibbutz I lived surrounded by people 24hours a day, with so many different nationalities and languages spoken. My Bar’am family spreads all over the world. In June I will visit some of my closest friend from the kibbutz, in Sweden :)

After 3 amazing months there I left. That was heartbreaking. I have never cried when leaving a place or a country because I felt it was time to move on, but the kibbutz that was something. I cried in the volunteer office, while handing my keys, in the car to Tel Aviv, in the hostel, at the airport, in the plane. Almost non stop until the plane landed in Paris and when my mom asked on the phone if I was happy to be home I said “NO” I didn’t want to speak because I was too sad.

I was very excited to go to Denmark then because I hated being home but what wasn’t good is I still had in mind the kibbutz and how I missed it. So I was a sad person for some time.

Have you heard of the cultural shock ? Because in September I was right in. Basically you can’t deal with the “strangeness” of the new place you are so you close down. After being extra social 3 months, I was “extra alone” for a little while. Luckily the volunteers with me were incredibly sweet and nice.The Danes I met weren’t so terrible people, it was just..the circumstances were difficult.

The Danes are probably the most individualistic people I have ever met, (not in a bad way) comparing to other places I lived in. So imagine the transition between a place where people come to be social all the time and have fun, and a place where people have a specific goal, want to work hard on themselves, stay focused.Plus they have their life here already, with friends etc…So it’s understandable it was harder to connect at first. It was a bit like the Israeli members or the kibbutz, they have their life their and you are one more volunteer passing…

It was challenging but I adapted ok I guess, even if it took time. I became more flexible at work.

I wasn’t so convince by my volunteer work here, however I really like how people work in Denmark. You don’t have the hierarchy like in France, where the boss give you order you will follow, I feel it’s more equal, my mentor give me ideas and what he has in mind but then we are really free to try what we want. So I developed skills and tried things I didn’t think I would have the opportunity to do elsewhere.

I also had to question my self a lot. Especially because I was very negative when I came to Denmark, and it was easier to blame everyone else but myself for that.

It may seem a contradiction because everybody thinks Danish don’t express their feelings but I improved a lot with this here!

In France we like to be emotional, sometimes dramatic and we think that we communicate well this way. Well not really, we just hope everybody will guess what is on our mind just looking at our face and being angry when something is wrong will be enough for it to change. Here it doesn’t work (it didn’t work in the kibbutz either…I didn’t realize it, that’s all) so even if it might be hard for me I have to use words and not my face because I understood people aren’t psychic. I feel happier this way trust me :)

I had incredible experiences in both places (and more to come!): hitch hiking, meeting amazing people ( I am proud to prove my dear Martin, that yes there are actually nice Danes in Denmark, and some have empathy!!! ;) ), visiting beautiful places, trying new food…

Today I am happy because the friends I met one year ago in Israel are still close to me, we manage to see each other and I would have not imagine having such friendship. I wonder if in one year I will still be in touch with the friends I have here, I hope so, but I don’t even know where I will be so…for now I will just enjoy it :)

I think I am a happier person now that one year ago even if it wasn’t easy everyday and that’s nice!!!

Runaway to Elsewhere

This week was quite nice! We had different activities happening in the week and new projects starting, also more socializing between Danes and International students. I also think of how it was when I arrived, the work (the way I work is so different now! it’s funny to see the change), the people the place and even my self and it started to make me think…

If you have been living abroad, when making this choice you may have been told you run away from your “problems”…When are you coming back? When will you start to have a serious life and solve “your issues”. This all a lot of BS seriously.

This could not be less true.People who leave actually look for new solutions they cannot find where they are. If you are running away from your problems you dont acknowledge them. When you decide you want to go abroad because the current situation and place doesn’t bring you anything new (you don’t have to go very far to do that though, you can just change city in your own country…) you are looking for something different and hopefully better.

Why? Because you know that you are diving into something “strange”: the word “foreign” in French is the same as “strange” and it can also mean unknown. It’s scary but it brings you new things that well…you couldn’t know!

New solutions and perspectives you will never find back home.

For instance a new way to communicate. Not only learning a new language but expressing your self differently (maybe more effectively?). One example: what we call a “discussion” in France might be a confrontation for my English friends. So you may have to reconsider how you express yourself. Being with new people who don’t know you, who can’t read your mind, who can’t understand your cultural codes will force you to try other ways to understand each other  and it can benefit you when back home.

Sometimes we forget how to communicate with our own family because they know us for such a long time so we expect them to understand us completely to read our mind. And we forget that the new people we meet don’t know that. So they will base their opinion on what they see. Trust me, your mom may know how to talk to you but for them it might be as talking to a wall sometimes.

The fact that you are elsewhere also allow you to do these crazy things you wouldn’t dare to do back home. Sometimes being “home” for too long makes us lazy, we don’t see the opportunities anymore, our friends have an image of us that it might be hard to get away from (if everybody thinks you are hilarious, you feel you owe it to them and changing is hard, if you are the one always depressed it’s the same…it’s tiresome sometimes). When I was back in my hometown it was taking me forever to motivate my self to look for a job. In a new country you are like on a high being somewhere blank, where you have everything to built, so you take more risks. You have to do it because otherwise you’ll have to go back and usually you want to make it work more over there.

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My sister is trying new way to communicate with me. We didn’t quite figure it out yet…

Also because you are surrounded by people who mostly think quite different than you do, you’ll be challenged, you will be confronted to tons of different way of doing and thinking (remember don’t say it’s dumb, it’s just …different ;). Last Wednesday an acupuncturist came to school and gave us a demonstration.The following day we talked: a friend doesn’t believe in it, another see in it some sort of magic, someone else science, another danger, others they don’t really know… and we were all together seeing this demonstrations, yet because we have such different background and culture we comes up with completely different opinion.

While being abroad I can also feel my progression. I remember last year just before going to Israël, I was living with my parents for about 6 months. The last 3 months I was dying of boredom. I didn’t see anything new, anything changing. I was stuck there and it felt like a dead end. The place I am now in Denmark isn’t the biggest city, it’s actually a school in the middle of nowhere (but it’s very beautiful!). My kibbutz was also in the middle of nowhere. Yet so many things happened in nearly a year!

Travelling doesn’t leave you in peace. It can be exhausting. I remember going crazy sometimes not understand what was going on but now I can see the benefit. Accepting new ideas and situations and also enjoying it. It frustrates me sometimes when people ask me if I like Denmark. It’s more complex, I like it, I do now but it wasn’t an easy road, however it’s not because something is difficult you should give up. If it was that bad I would have left, trust me. I left France so I wouldn’t have hesitated one second. But something was holding me back. And I am glad for that.

 

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When my friends ask me to describe Denmark

I really have no idea if I’ll go back “home” one day. I miss my friends and family, yet I feel I am going backward every time I am there too long…

I explained here that a lot of the people I met in my kibbutz had some hard times back home or they needed some changes. I talked to many after leaving and, running away was the best thing that happened to them. Because they go back to their problem with fresh ideas and approach. They question themselves and what is going on instead of pretending there is no problem. So we will see in few years where it gets me. One of my friend is very curious about it, he says he has no clue about what to expect. Me neither, but I am not freaking out at all not knowing what I’ll do in three months…

That's my plan for now after...this

That’s my plan after my EVS

PS: If you want to know more about Denmark and you are too lazy to read you can shake out this marvelous tumblr made by EVS volunteers. Only true facts of course!

Le plus difficile

Cela fait maintenant un peu plus de 7 mois que je suis au Danemark. L’adaptation a été plus longue que je ne l’aurais imaginé mais je pense me sentir plutôt bien ici, en tout cas suffisamment pour rester quelques mois de plus après la fin de mon projet.

Alors je dis plutôt car il y a quelques chose qui revient sans cesse et qui m’empêche un petit peu de me sentir super bien comme je l’étais en Israël ou en Angleterre.

Ne pas avoir de vrais liens avec les locaux.J’ai déjà dû en parler ici, le Danois est une espèce un peu complexe à aborder. Du coup je me suis donner du temps, de la patience

La plupart des gens que je connais, s’ils savent où se situent le Danemark et ont quelques infos sur le pays, imaginent les habitants avec des casques de vikings, gros buveurs de bière, froids et réservés mais sympas dès qu’on leur paie une tournée. Bref pas spécialement handicapé socialement.Il y a certaines choses avec lesquelles je suis d’accord d’autres moins.

Déjà personnes ne portent de casques de vikings par contre il est vrai qu’une bière rend le Danois plus chaleureux.Chaleur qui retombe lorsque celui-ci a décuvé.J’ai été très surprise lorsque le lendemain de certaines soirées au pub, les étudiants ne m’adressaient pas même un regards dans les couloirs. Pourtant ils ne s’étaient pas donnés en spectacle et je ne pense pas avoir fait quoique ce soit d’impoli ou d’embarrassant pour que l’on m’évite, et puis ils le faisaient TOUS.

Dur.

Mais je me suis dit qu’avec le temps cela allait s’améliorer. Je n’avais pas complètement tort. Quand j’ai commencé à travailler avec eux, on a pu se rapprocher un peu plus, à présent ils nous disaient bonjour dans les couloirs (après deux mois oui :). Parce qu’on leur posait des questions, sur ce qu’ils faisaient, on s’intéressait à eux.Mais cela s’arrêtait là. je pense que j’ai été très choqué. Non pas par leur timidité, mais par leur manque de curiosité. Je me rappelle avoir failli m’étouffer un jour lorsqu’une des filles m’a demandé ce que j’avais fait de ma journée. C’était la premère fois qu’on me posait la question en 6 mois.

Je parlais d’ailleurs avec un ami danois et il me disait que les français peuvent ignorer volontairement quelqu’un. C’est vrai que j’ai déjà fait comme si une personne n’existait pas car elle m’agaçait. Et je lui ai dit que les danois font pareil! Mais il m’a répondu que pour eux c’est presque inconscient tellement c’est dans leur culture. Ils seraient incapable de le faire volontairement.

Il y a très peu de différence entre un étranger et un fantôme ici. Il n’y a pas plus tard qu’aujourd’hui, je suis descendu dans la salle commune pour chercher un fruit. Un groupe de Danois discutaient. Lorsque d’autre Danois arrivaient ils les saluaient et discutaient lorsque c’était un étranger, non. Quand je suis arrivée personne n’a levé la tête. J’ai du me pousser pour laisser passer quelqu’un mais me dire bonjour ne lui ai pas venu à l’esprit. Pourtant il y a deux jours j’étais dans la chambre de cette personne en grande conversation. L’amie à qui elle parlait aujourd’hui me parle beaucoup aussi. Quand elle est seule. Du coup il est difficile de ne pas se sentir inférieur, lorsque un simple bonjour leur est impossible dès qu’ils sont plus de deux.

Et ça ça blesse. Parce qu’on se rend compte qu’on passera toujours après. Qu’on pourra avoir une conversation avec l’un d’entre eux s’il n’y a personne d’autres à qui parler.

Et pour cette raison je ne pense pas que je pourrais vivre dans ce pays. Certains pourraient me dire qu’il y a la barrière de la langue. J’ai pris des cours de danois puis arrêter devant les efforts inutiles que je faisais. Personnes ne veut se fatiguer ici à me parler en danois, trop d’effort, l’anglais c’est plus simple…

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The yoghurt crisis

Today we had the weekly meeting we always have in the school on fridays. It was very nice actually, first we were sitting on the floor. I don’t mind chairs but I found it more cosy and relaxed. One of the students Aki, prepared a song for us in Japanese and that was quite incredible, she had a very nice voice! And it’s so different to the songs you are used to when it’s in Japanese. So Torben was in charge of the meeting. He is one of a kind. I always wonder when I see him what can be in his mind and it always makes me laugh. He is a very funny guy and full of ideas and energy.

So he talked to us about wellness and music, and we listened to a song he composed to fix our chakra on the solar plexus. So here we were, all lying on the floor and listening to this song. I thought people around me were falling asleep, it was very relaxing.

Then he talked about the program of the week end, I like this one part “running through the woods” because I pictures a bunch of people running like mad man in the forest and I found it amusing, but actully he meant it in a more normal way like, you have running shoes and run together….well I prefer my version.

And then the serious talk came on.

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Because Yoghurt is serious business here!

 You see, we have a yoghurt crisis in the school since this week. It seems to be quite a big deal. It all started when the kitchen realised that we were swallowing twice more yoghurt as usual. Literally. And it has a price, so they decided from now on it will only be at breakfast and not for snack. (yes you see in Denmark they are much healthier when it comes to snack, it’s fruit and muesli and yoghurt but well muesli on it’s own?? dry right?).

And the international students were very annoyed because on week ends it’s usually their main dish. On week ends we have brunch. It’s not bad but it’s less food so usually you get hungry earlier.

Also some of them aren’t so keen or used to Danish food so I can understand that yoghurt is safe value for them. So we started to have this debate. Why we ate so much yoghurt, and what can we have instead. In a way it’s more than interesting than it seems because it’s a good example of cultural differences here.

Many of the international students eat very different food and it’s difficult to adjust. Of course the school cannot provide their food from home but well if there is most of the things you can’t eat, both have to compromise. One of them said he found the bread too hard so he has to dip it in the water. Well I am afraid that Denmark cannot change their bread and personally I think that at least it has taste not like this awful white bread that I found in the UK.

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It’s not related but I felt like posting a picture of my sister. She looks in crisis

But we do have some alternative. Often the Nepalese cook for us amazing dinner on week ends and that’s terrific! so much spices and flavor yum yum!

We have a tumblr!

If you do your EVS in Denmark I guess you can relate!

http://thingsandstuffindenmark.tumblr.com/

;)

Hello my middle name is confusion, I am from China

It’s 2014 and I am still in Denmark, unbelievable.  So I came back to the højskole in January on the 9th.

I had training just before in Copenhagen which was very nice and I didn’t really know what to expect from the Danish when I would go back because well they have very different social skills right but it was a good surprise because they were so nice and some literally jumped on me (weird, you have to be away 3 weeks and people love you! good to know).

I also noticed that a lot of them aren’t scared anymore and talk to us ( maybe they weren’t scared of us but now they acknowledge our existence, it feels odd! but good) and the one we “knew” before are more friendly so that’s cool.

But some people were missing.

The class of International students is completely new. 18 new faces from Ghana, Nepal, China , Latvia, Hungary, Lithuania, Turkey and Japan.

Communicating is always a challenge,so imagine now! For instance we have 6 Chinese here. Some have a decent English you can have a conversation with them, some….well it’s complicated. It’s funny because we learn Danish together and sometimes they try to use it but we don’t get anything because we don’t speak Danish either.

That's how Chinese must feel here

That’s how Chinese must feel here

But what is odd is the “group effect”. All of sudden they forget everything they know of English and stare at you with a blank  face, like you are an Alien from another planet! And you do silly moves speak slower, louder, eventually they will nod but you will have given up before they really understood anyway.

So when you have crucial information you realise you talk to them like you would to simple minded people, and it makes you sound very rude! I literally said once to them “Asian!!! Go there now!” how awful!

There is this one Chinese guy I love to talk with, even though I don’t think he ever understood me. With the girl from Hungary we asked him “where were you?” and he said ” I am fine”…. but at least he answered!

This girl from Hungary is pretty cool, we realize that it’s easier to bond with Europeans because we are similar in so many ways. But something we can’t beat her at is drinking vodka! Once I saw her sipping it like water, and I had pretty good training at the kibbutz but now I suck.

So imagine this weird combination trying to mix with the Danes. My dear Danish that I still can’t figure out but at least I have one good friend now so I can ask her, she is a bit like my guide here. For instance I come to her when I have all this stupid question, like why do you guys don’t say hello all the time like we do? Why don’t you confront and argue all the time like French? Why the word please doesn’t exist in Danish?

So it was pretty funny to see how the Danish girls reacted to the guys from Ghana asking “hey , are you married?”. It reminded me of all the wedding proposal I had in Zambia, even though Ghana is pretty different. So their Danish teacher made them a Danish session about how to ask out girls in Danish. Not sure it worked but it’s just beginning.

We also have new Nepalese but they are the complete opposite of the one we new before: the first group was loud, noisy, crazy, drunk, troublemakers and the most lovely guys on earth.

This new group is much more chilled, sweet and …behaved!

It’s good to realise that you can’t generalise about a whole culture just knowing some of them, like the Nepalese, we expected to have crazy boys. They are all different. My Danish friend keep telling me that this school isn’t Denmark and I believe her, the students here are “special” (not in this way…) and that I need to get out and experience Denmark differently…

And now it’s snowing it’s awesome!!! I realised I had one talent, maybe I can’t sing or dance or act but I am pretty good at snowball fight!

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100 ans ce n’est pas tous les jours!

Aujourd’hui un article un peu particulier. Et oui aujourd’hui on fête un anniversaire! Celui de l’école où je suis volontaire.

Mon école est spéciale (pour ne pas dire étrange mais bon ça c’est un autre débat…), c’est le genre de choses qu’on ne trouve qu’au Danemark. Ils appellent ça højskole (si tu trouves cela imprononçable et bien….moi aussi!).

Tout à commencer avec Grundtvig, un gars avec de multiples talents (écrivain, poète, pédagogue…merci wikipédia!) qui pensait que ce serait bien d’éduquer les masses plutôt que seulement les nobles, et à l’époque c’était assez révolutionnaire comme concept. Donc ces écoles sont apparues partout dans le pays. Pas d’examen d’entrée ni de sortie, le but c’est d’apprendre sur divers sujet pour soit, d’être “éclairé” (ouais l’influence des Lumières t’as vu! La France est PARTOUT).

Mon école est donc l’une de ces højskole, mais elle a bien évoluée depuis 100 ans. Je sais que pendant un moment il y a eu des gymnastes qui s’entraînaient ici mais aussi des pêcheurs, dans les années 90 des geeks, pour apprendre l’informatique. Mais depuis un moment c’est les comédies musicales.

J’en entends rigoler dans le coin. Mais les comédies musicales au Danemark c’est du sérieux, ce n’est pas les trucs minables à la Kamel Ouali qu’on a en France, où avouer qu’on aime, c’est être rejeté par sa famille et ses amis! Ici non, il y a même une école nationale de comédie musicale, oui je suis sérieuse! Et c’est dans cette école que les élèves de cette classe veulent entrer, donc ils se préparent ici.

Mais il y a aussi théâtre, internationaux et “jeunes”. Les jeunes c’est un programme un peu particulier, ce sont des jeunes (oui comme le nom l’indique) qui ne peuvent pas suivre au lycée pour diverses raisons, donc ils sont envoyés ici pour pouvoir rattraper leur retard et être plus soutenu en cours et d’un point de vue personnel.

Bien sûr le fait qu’il n’y ai pas d’exam n’est pas la seule différence, l’enseignement est très différent de tout ce que j’ai vu, c’est très relax comparé à la France. Rien que la relation prof-étudiant, le vouvoiement, les noms de famille on oublie. Je trouve que le dialogue est bien plus présent aussi. Et on est vraiment libre, que ce soit les étudiants ou les professeurs, ici prendre des initiatives c’est bienvenue même très encouragées. Du coup l’école évolue sans cesse. Après ça peut être déstabilisant parce que la méthode de travail est très différent mais je reviendrais là dessus

Bon je vais arrêter de parler et laisser parler les images (oui je fais de la pub pour mon taf, aucune honte!). Je vous encourage bien sûr vivement à regarder toutes les vidéos! Voici la chaîne et aussi notre blog!

 

 

Français, English….Dansk?

While traveling  I experienced a lot of things while discovering new culture and lifestyle. One of the most obvious is of course…language.

I think my interest for language grew while traveling. I always liked English and then love it when I started to learn more and moved to London. And then it became natural for me to use it, of course you can still tell I am French, but I am vok using it. And being abale to speak 2 languages is so amazing, it opens up your world. Because you will understand so much more of the culture and you have more means of expressing your self.

A nice experience I had was with this friend, half French, half English guy. He had grew up between France and the UK and could speak both perfectly . When we met (through couchsurfing) we started using…both. How nice it is to be able to switch language, that it adapts to what you want to communicate, because if you aren’t an interpret it’s not as easy to translate everything and some ideas will come more naturally in one language than the other. I really like that!

I have to say I was quite satisfied for a while just speaking 2 languages.

As you may have heard French have a bad rep when it comes to learning language and yes we suck. It might be the teaching, some say pride in our culture, I would also think that we may need English less than my Swedish friends for example, because it’s a language used worldwide. So being able to speak more than French was already good enough for me.

But this feeling changed, when I started travelling more. First I thought spanish would be great and useful. But I kind of hate the idea that you would learn a language because it has a use. Of course you can’t deny it and I think this is why so many of us learn English, but I think you need to be attracted to it.

I really liked Hebrew for example, and apart from Israel I don’t see where I could use it. Being there 3 months I only catches few words and expressions but if I have the opportunity I will learn it. I am also very interested in Portuguese.

But first, Danish is where I will start . Denmark is very good when it comes to teaching language. As a foreigner I have 3 years of free Danish lessons. Started this week. I don’t know if I will make it but it’s worth trying and I am very curious. It would be very interesting to learn something that is so different to my mother tongue (ok chinese or japanese could also be a nice challenge). From a French perspective it sounds so …odd. A lot of the sounds are impossible to reproduce for me, but when you start reading Out of Africa, you just think of a new world that will open to you once you can speak the language!

Wish me luck!

whaaaat

That’s my expression when someone try to communicate in Danish with me…for now!