Mina shares her experience from Spain. Discover how she spends her days in Mallorca.
Discovering the cultural exchange program of the Center for Affirmation and Development, things seemed more than idyllic to me to be true. Working with children, who is otherwise close to me, learning the language and getting to know Spanish culture in Mallorca and two months of sea… so where will you be better than that ?! However, I have to admit that I was a bit skeptical and didn’t know what would be waiting for me there, because it all sounds nice while we’re at home, but I wasn’t sure if it would look like that when I came, so I didn’t have any expectations. To my wonderful surprise it turned out even better than I thought. The children accepted me immediately, and the parents are to be desired.
There is work to be done, but nothing too demanding, which you do not do at home. In terms of maintaining hygiene, removing toys for children, making beds and some of the responsibilities as far as the children themselves are concerned, such as supervision, changing diapers, changing clothes and the like. Also, I must emphasize that my free time was respected and they really took care of it. Upon arrival, they let me come to myself for one or two days, get to know the city and my mother gave me pocket money for the whole month. I usually got a schedule on Sunday evenings with all the calculations of how busy I was on which day, so that I could organize my free time, and Saturday from noon and Sunday were always free for me.
In agreement with them, I could change the schedule to have more time for my adventures. Really, I had complete freedom, sometimes I didn’t come home for two days because I met people and the road took me to their side, but I called so they wouldn’t worry, because they are still responsible for me while I’m under their roof. They kept telling me on several occasions that I did not hesitate to call them at any time of the day or night if I had a problem. I even went on vacation with them to Ibiza, and met members of their immediate and extended family. For the last two weeks, I was left alone with my mother and three children, so it was a little harder.
Globally, when I look at it, I got more than I expected, I learned a lot of things, from language to the functioning of a large family, relationships, getting out of the comfort zone and coping in an unknown country, not to mention … So, this is one of the experiences that you will not regret, that strengthens you, that gives you wings, if you are brave enough to step out of your tug and give yourself space to be alone and get to know each other as much as you can, without even guessing.