Our six students attending the 6th TPM in Vikeså, Norway from 14th to 19th May 2017, describe their experiences. We asked them to choose a photograph reflecting their experience and also to write their testimonies which you can read below. The words summarizing their testimonies are Living together, happiness, way, experience, incredible and learning.
Gerard Lozano: Living together
“The very moment you learn you are going to participate and enjoy a wonderful experience like the mobility, you feel how your emotions and the magic start. Little by little there is a countdown while you are getting to know the person who will host you at home, the person who will open the door to these new experiences.
The departure day arrives and the previous night you feel nervous and unrestful. We get to the airport and fly, getting closer and closer to our destination, to our new home during 5 days. We arrive in Norway, and in less than an hour we are starting our adventure with our hosts. We arrived in Vikeså at last. We get off the bus and we meet those amazing people we will never forget.
The week starts and goes by slowly. We become closer and closer, like a family. At that moment we realise it’s Thursday, the very last day with all the other countries. The day goes by quickly and we meet in the evening, after the supper at school. It’s time to say goodbye and there is a lot of sadness on our faces because we have to depart from extraordinary people who are part of our hearts. People we will probably not see again, but one never knows.
It’s Friday and we are spending the last hours in Norway. We never thought our adventure would go by so quickly. We waited for it for months and then it seemed it was finishing in a few hours. We didn’t want to depart but it was time to go home. At the moment of arriving at the airport we felt an immense sadness and it was hard to say goodbye to my hosting family. We boarded in the plane, and the moment the plane started, I felt there was no way back.
Thanks to this trip, I’ve been able to meet amazing people who I will remember all my life. The most important thing in this trip has been the fact of meeting new people, and living together with them and ending up feeling like you are part of their family. I do recommend this experience which I will remember all my life.”
Both Gerard and Jabir chose this same picture.
Jabir Fekkak: Happiness
I don’t know which word could better define this week since I’ve experienced so many things! I’ve met a lot of new people and I have felt a lot of feelings innerly so that now, defining everything in a single word is practically impossible.
This trip has made me change. I’ve grown up innerly. It’s been an explosion of feelings that has made me change my views of the world. I believe that a good word to define this week is “HAPPINESS” because this is the summary of my feelings during my stay in Norway. I’ve felt an enormous happiness every time we listened to a song and we danced to the music or each time we played jokes and we all started laughing. People in Norway are open-minded, intellectual and most of them are friendly and kind… Meeting them has been one of the best experiences in my life since I have learned an amazing amount of things from them and I would never change the experiences in this meeting. The fact of getting to know a new country, living together with the families and being able to do all those trips and activities are things that have left a mark on me forever.
My hosting family has helped me feel totally immerse in this experience. I am so grateful to them for treating me as if I was another son and opening the doors of their home without knowing me very much. They know that if they ever come to Spain, the doors of my home will be opened to them.
One of the most intense days were Wednesday 17 May, the Norwegian National Day. I felt a special affection towards Norway when seeing Norwegians being so respectful and loving to their own country. That day I totally fell in love with Norway.
What I miss the most about the trip are the people. All the persons I’ve met who are the best part of the meeting. Without them it wouldn’t have been the same and I’m glad to keep in touch.
I’m so grateful to have been able to join this Erasmus+ trip in Norway. I wish I may meet my friends again in the future. The world is small after all, and I’m convinced we’ll laugh again all together.
Minerva Graells: A way
Look at the photograph above, apparently it’s a simple photograph with some teenagers laughing, but what you don’t know is that behind this image there are a thousand moments, a thousand memories and a thousand people we will never forget. I couldn’t imagine how I could have such complicity with people I didn’t know in just a few days.
I can’t really explain everything I’ve experienced during this trip since there are emotions that only the people joining this project will be able to understand. Those people participating in the meeting have opened their minds and shared their lives with strangers who have quickly become friends. They are friends that we might not meet again, but nevertheless, we will always be friends.
I’ve felt amazing emotions with them. This experience has opened my mind so as to know all the ways there are in the world. For a long time we have thought we are the centre of the world and we have stayed in our comfort zone without knowing about the amazing people that are outside.
Thanks to this Erasmus+ project, I’ve been able to meet amazing people and to know a different way, a unique way which perhaps we can only understand.
Miquel Robert: Experience
Travelling to Norway with the Erasmus+ project and my colleagues at the Erasmus Creativity Club has been a great experience for all of us.
In Norway there are three things I fell in love with. First, the landscape, nature, the lakes with icy and crystal clear water, those waterfalls you could see in the morning when you got up and looked through the window. They all made you wake up looking forward to living, discovering and enjoying. Those dark Norwegian forests where the light penetrated through the trees were like entering into paradise and entering another world. The fact of walking across those paths made me feel happy, lively and hopeful.
The second outstanding thing which left a great impression on me was the school. There students behave very well during the lessons. They have a great respect towards their teachers. Students may sit on cupboards or Pilates balls, however they continue behaving so well. Another special feature of the school are rules. Rules there are very different from those in Spain. In Spain what is important is to learn and pass the subjects. In Norway the rules are the following: “Well-being, be safe and always be kind” and the rule I’ll always remember “Do your best, not be the best” and after all these comes learning.
The last and most important thing for me are people. There are no words to describe what those people were like, the moments they made us live, all the laughing, the evenings eating waffles, playing Norwegian bowling, when we all met at someone’s home and talked… I could spend the whole day rememorating the time we spent with such wonderful people, those people who made us not want to leave Norway, those people who made us smile every evening, each moment spent with them was a new experience, a new feeling, a new emotion… But I’m not only talking about the Norwegian students, I also include my travelling colleagues. That evening we spent cooking Spanish omelettes was one of the best in my life and I will never forget it.
Aina Martin: Incredible
Incredible, this is the first Word that comes to my mind when I think of this week, of these hours, moments and people, especially people.
I left Norway less than five hours ago. I’ve left behind people I will never forget. I had met some of them before and I met others on the very last day. I’m leaving behind a family who has made me feel as at home. They have accepted me with open arms and they were as enthusiastic with this experience as I was.
I cannot forget the people I met at the school corridors and I had to turn back, the people I could understand with a simple look and we couldn’t stop laughing. I’m leaving behind moments which I can only describe as “incredible”: bathing in a lake with clothes, climbing mountains with a rope while admiring the best landscape I’ve ever seen, feeling as another ordinary Norwegian, eating lots of ice cream on 17 May, getting to know better people I thought I already knew…
And now, sitting in the plane while listening to one of my favourite songs, I’m looking through the window feeling so grateful for these experiences, although saying goodbye is awful. I’ve experienced things which are so incredible, and been with such wonderful people that, right now, the only thing I know is that this is not an end.
Ilènia Llamas: Learning
How could I describe this trip? It’s been a trip which has been filled with emotions every day. I’ve struggled to join this trip for two years. I’ve spent hours and hours in front of the computer doing assignments which weren’t easy or were simply unusual so as to travel to Norway. Believe me, all these hours of work have been worth. In my stay in Norway I’ve felt and learnt many things. I have felt as if I was actually Norwegian. The family who have hosted me have made me feel integrated from the very first minute. I shared my daily routine and my feelings with the people there, but I’ve especially felt how they love and how passionate they are towards their country on 17 May, the National day in Norway. I was very lucky to be there. It’s been a trip full of emotions. Therefore, I’ll try to describe the emotions I’ve felt because of this trip.
Euphoria: The euphoria I felt when I was informed I was travelling to Norway, a journey which I had been waiting and working for during two years. Thanks to this, I’ve learned that if you make the effort, you struggle with enthusiasm for a goal, you can achieve it. Everything you have struggled for and you have endured is really worth it. If you give up, it is no use. So thanks to this Erasmus+ project I’ve learned that if I struggle and work hard for what I want, I can get it.
Admiration: I admire the landscapes in Norway, the villages, every single corner I’ve seen in this country, but I admire the most the Norwegian people. I admire them because of the passion they feel towards their country, how much they respect wildlife. I haven’t seen any forests, paths, streets, lakes in a bad condition. If they happened to see a can, they would pick it up, whereas in Spain some forests are a shame. When we went for a walk in the countryside, they told us the story of a given mountain very passionately or when they describe the tomb of a historic personality from Norway they spoke with a lot of proud about that person. However, I admire the Norwegians the most because of their personality. Starting with my Norwegian family, they have treated me as a daughter from minute one although they didn’t know me before, as if I was one of their daughters. They gave me what I needed and asked me if I was OK. They’ve treated me so well that Malene’s house reminded me of my house. Her brothers were amazing too: we played, laughed and talked about a lot of things as if we were old friends. They’ve been like the little brothers I’ve never had. And Malene was my best friend in Norway. If she noticed I was getting wet, she would offer her umbrella. She has cared about me so much. Also, when we visited Frida, Dagne or Solfrid at their home, all the parents took care of us although they didn’t know us. Apart from the families, people are very respectful with everything and everybody. There, people treat you very well even though they don’t know you. Here in Spain we don’t treat foreigners in that way, some people call them “guiris” or look down on them. The students at the school treated us so well too and they have also become our friends. We already have groups in Facebook, Snapchat and we talk to one another every day.
Affection: I am very fond of the people I met in Norway because they’ve become part of my life, but I’m especially fond of my Norwegian family, and the little brothers and Norwegian wildlife.
Gratitude: I’m very grateful to the people who accepted me and made me feel part of their lives. I don’t know how to thank the Norwegian people for everything I’ve learned from them, not only the way of life, the country, but also and more especially from themselves. I’m also grateful to all the people who have made this project come true, my school and all the teachers involved.
Nostalgia: I miss the mornings when I woke up, drew the curtains and saw a lake or those mountains hidden in the mist. I miss the landscapes, the customs, the rain and the temperature, but especially the people. I miss Malene’s voice waking me up with a “good morning” and when I got out of the bedroom her little brothers also greeted me with “good morning” or “good night” when we went to bed. I miss the moments I spent with all the Norwegians and Catalans together, exchanging knowledge and things from each country, the games they taught us, the laughter together or the path we took every day to get to school through the mountain…
It’s an experience I will never forget. It makes you learn and grow up quickly. It teaches you to value the little things in life. You realize that although the world and countries are separated by barriers, we are all the same. The only differences are our customs and beliefs. You mustn’t look down on a person only because he comes from another country because you can always learn things from everybody regardless of the origin or the age, even from a 7-year-old kid. You can learn from everyone, not only from your parents and teachers. Everyone has something to help you grow up. If you close your mind and stay at home, you don’t know how much you are missing out there.
More testimonies of our students are available on the links below.
The original testimonies in Catalan on our school website.