During the last week, Johanna and I were in Thessaloniki to join the seminar „Together on refugees highway“, a workshop from Erasmus+ about the work with Refugees and Youth.
Our work started even before the seminar with organising stuff, so we knew a lot about the participant, for example their application and their arrival and departure, when their planes will start and how much the flight costs. But these were just theoretical informations, not filled with the personality of each participant. When we arrived, it was at first a little bit strange- is that the boy who wanted a room for his own? Is that the girl who can not eat gluten? But during the week, the pictures that we had of the persons before the seminar changed very fast.
The week started on monday with a „getting to know each other“ section. We learned the names and the eye colors of each other and had a lot of fun together. When we went out for lunch, they weren't strangers anymore.
After the following introduction, the seminar started. We learned a lot about many different topics and had workshps about migration, integration and Erasmus+ , to name just some examples, and the participants had also time to share their own experiences and learn from each other.
Between the theoretical things, there was also some time to discover the city. We made an interesting bustour trought Tessaloniki (ok, I could't see that much because there was an advertisement on the window next to me and the curves were a little bit too much for my stomach) but it was really nice to see something of the really beautiful city.
I think the food has also to be mentioned as one of the highlites of the week... We went to a restaurant twice a day, for lunch and for dinner, and especially the dinner was every evening really good. Back in Serres, I really miss the luxury to have nice meals twice a day without cooking... Not just because of the food (what was really great) but also because of the conversations with the others, the meals were excellent. From day to day we knew each other better and better, and the conversations on our vegeterian table were always really good.
The best evening was in my opinion the last one, when we went all together to a bar after dinner. During the evening, the bar turned into a club, everyone was singing and dancing and we had a lot of fun. But on the other hand it was also very emotional, because we had to say goodby to each other.
The last section of the seminar was about the final evaluation and every person had the chance to say something to the others while we were sitting in a circle of chairs. Some cried (included me), and I really didn't expected that at all! It is a little bit strange how the farewell of people that you know just for about a week can be so emotional.
All in all I am really thankfull for the experiences I gained during the week and for all the wonderful people that I could meet. I hope I can see them again as soon as possible!