One year ago
Right now I am answering an interview for Estonian youth council about Active . I like the questions very much since they allow me to explain what Active really is and offer our perspective. And sitting here, thinking and asnwering I realized that it is exactly one year since I took my graduation exams. One year ago I walked to the University last time as a student, all the knowledge summing up in my head again and again, feeling how great it would be to have some more time to read through everything to make sure I really know it. And then I just got the questions, prepared the answers, presented them, defended my thesis, waited for results, got the results and went home. I remember how the closest people called me immediately. Congratulated and were happy with me. It was a wonderful day. It was a day when I had to overcome some doubts, had to believe in myself and had to show that I can. It was a challenge I managed and it gave me wings. I came to the end of one path. My parents do not need to worry anymore about my education. They managed to provide everything to enable me to be ready for working life in an area I have chosen. That eases a lot.
I miss that day and at the same time I am happy I do not need to go through that again. I miss my studies. I miss my classmates and the students life style ( I do not complain about my current lifestyle though)
I think I will always celebrate this day.
Web of dreams
Freaky..On 11th of October 2007 I wrote that two people dreamt of me the same night. Today I got to know that the same people dreamt of me the last night too. These two people know each other through Active but live far from each other and do not talk/chat that much together.
The best thing is that one of them was in the other one´s dream together with me as well.
Some seminar thoughts...
...about national identity
Why should I be proud of High Tatras (Slovak mountains) just because I am a Slovak?
Why should I be proud of my ancestors who "won" a fight for their/my rights?
Why should I be proud of a slovak national hockey team that won some championship?
I think I can be happy about it. I can be happy that there are such a beatiful mountains in the world but I have not built them and I haven´t decided to be born in Slovakia. So why should I be proud? Shouldnt I be proud only of something I have done or I have contributed to? Tatras are beautiful. Alps as well. And I have heard that Mount Everest is also kinda astonishing ;-)
Being proud about my ancestors. Why should I be proud of something they have done? I can be happy that they did. As many other people who have nothing to do with "my" country did. But why should their acts and their decisions make ME feel special about myself? The same goes for any sport team.
I do not want to hide behind national identity, gender identity etc and derive a good feeling about myself or excuses for who I am based on something I have not influenced...
The renewed room
And here are some more pics from the rest of the room:
A summary of the seminar in Slovakia
The motto of the seminar: One person can make a change. One person is important.
General key words: Cold. Ladybirds (if you wonder why, ask me)
Day by day:
Arrival day - the bus from Bratislava airport to the seminar place got lost. The road disappeared in the field but the bus driver kept on driving until we reached some bushes that would destroy the bus. Then the driver got to believe that it was not the right road and we turned (after 15 minuts of backing first). The food was very good (Unexpectadly. And so it was the whole week.)
First day - Active participation day. Discussions about ways how to change. Does one person matter? It does. We got to know that our expert who was supposed to cover the whole day programme on minorities would not be able to arrive. So prep.team got some extra tasks to do.
Second day - Minorities. We managed. We prepared a great programme. And the movie "Freedom writers" touched us all. Now we know - one person can make a difference.
Third day - Minorities continue. Presentation of the countries. We learned that we ourselves have plenty of prejudices and stereotypes. That eventhough we claim how open-minded and tolerant we are, our behaviuor such small comments or giggling about "cruel" reality prove the opposite. There is a need to work with that a bit more.
Fourth day - Excursion day. Some dissappointment because of the lack of skiing equipment in the rental places in the skiing resort (meaning no skiing) was cured by an alternative programme - small trip to the top of the mountains. Wonderful sunny weather above the clouds, white snow around, greatness and mistery of the mountains made it up for us.
Fifth day - Minorities continue. Discussions on national identity and the question about its neccessity caused some confrontation. Looking now at the evaluations - it served only for the good. Conclusion for myself: it is neccessary to tell if there is something wrong or if one senses a misunderstanding otherwise it can go wrong. As soon as a problem is "cought" in the beginning, it can be easily solved. AND - honesty honesty honesty! Important!!!!!!
Sixth day - Practice of recruitment of new members in the morning. Gender presentation in the evening. Some very obvious things for one person are not at all reflected by another one. There is a need to launch discussions to start the reflection process and sensitize our members.
Seventh day - different workshops. Farewell party.
Eigth day - Departure. Wr could not face more troubles after we left the seminar place as we faced. Cold cold train, loong waiting for food in Bratislava that ended up in three wrong dishes served, being short of time, delayed plane, missed bus home, not the best weather for driving the car in dark. BUT we managed =) We all arrived home, safe and with nice memories from the seminar.
The evening programmes: The most creative evening programmes I have ever taken part in. I am still amazed. All the countries did really well and took care of well prepared activities to entertain the others. THANK YOU all for that!
Feelings afterwards: The preparatory team did a good and responsible job. The participants contributed to the great development of the seminar. Am having several thoughts on my mind (related to the topics). I will share in next entries.
One person can make a change!
Happy New Year wishes
Happy New Year =) =) =)