My EVS in Estonia
I´m Eva, I´m 19 years old and I come from a small town in the north of Portugal. In the begining of this year I decided to take a chance and start an EVS in Estonia. Almost a month has gone by since I came to Rõuge. I am getting used to live in this small village, and I have learned some things during my short but exciting stay.
I remember that right after I came out of the airplane, all I could see was snow covering the landscape: snow covering the buildings, the cars, the trees, you could see it everywhere.
Coming from a sunny weahter country with warm temperatures, seeing so much snow for the first time is pretty exciting. Also, the -20ºC temperatures that caught me by surprise will be one of the things to be remembered.
Estonia has a really low population density, so you never see buildings pilled up or really close to each other. I love to wake up and see the sun rising, or, in late afternoon, the sunset, because of the beautiful pink and orange colors which always make my day and are the perfect opportunity to take a picture.
Getting used to live in a small village can be a challenge, and, in fact I expected it to be much harder. I think a place can be as big or as small as you make it. You can turn a village in a bigger place by exploring the surroundings, and going on walks.
The forests and trees covered in snow and the little houses spreaded around the village remind me of Christmas farytalles.
Being in a place like Rõuge is much more peacefull and quieter. It makes you learn how to appreciate little things and pay attention to the world around you.
During February I went to Tartu, a city one hour from Rõuge, and also travelled to Tallinn, the capital city, where I vistied the Old Town.
Another thing I noticed was the big diference from Portugal in terms of food. I tried new food and flavours, which I really enjoyed. For example, the really dark bread, some cheese products and smoked fish, much more flavourfull and intense than I was used to.
On my first week here I also skated on ice for the first time, on a frozen lake, right in front of the youthcenter. It´s harder than it seems and I fell many times. Sadly, when I started to get a little better, the ice began to melt, as it is getting warmer, and too dangerous to be on ice.
Last friday, it was Independence Day: the 99th year since Estonia became independent country. After a tumultuous history of invasions and occupations by other countries. It is an important and big event, celebrated all around Estonia. On 24th February, I went to this concert, after cake and champagne and commemorated this important day the history of country.
Eva, from Portugal