Bienvenido, lector


Last year I decided that I wanted to work on myself, to become a richer (figurately speaking – an enrichment that is referred to my experiences and values) and fuller person. I did not know where to start from but I knew I wanted to live a significative experience that could positively change me. I knew that I wanted to leave and come back being different, closer to the version of me that I try to be.

And so I did.

The 24th of June I took my flight to Madrid. I arrived around lunch time in the spanish capital and I spent the rest of that day wandering around the city guided by a friend I met in Edinburgh, whose uncle apparently designed the coolest park in Madrid.

24/06/2019, coolest park in Madrid

After a fantastic day in the capital and a dinner consisting in a bowl of Gazpacho (note to self: ask for the recipe), I left the morning of the 25th to El Alamo, the closest village to FIEB Foundation, a centre for biodiversity reseach and protection where I was going to volunteer at.

I have always wanted to learn Spanish (my biggest dream is to take part in projects over sustainable development in Latin America). Moreover the idea of working with animals in a wildlife conservation centre really excited me. But once there, things did not seem to start so good.

To be completely honest with you I was scared. From what I had heard so far, that place was in the middle of nowehere and every single person I had met got surprised that I was going to spend there a whole month.

And they were right: it was in the middle of nowhere.

But I was wrong worrying: being in the middle of nowhere is not a negative thing. On the contrary, I found it the most peaceful place I’ve ever been, surrounded by nature, or what could survive that dry weather, and the voices of the animals inhabiting the site. Unfortunately sharing pictures of them is not permitted since most of the species we took care of had been sequestered from illegal trade and are currently under examination.

But what I can share is this picture of two lovely donkeys, Leroy and Merlin (not sponsored), surrounding the dinner table, begging for our food.

Unfortunately, 500 words are not even cosely enough to express my gratitude for this experience that allowed me not only to learn a new language in just one month but most importantly to meet people I will not forget. In fact, they had been so lovely that I decided to go back during this upcoming winter break. Here is a picture of some of them on my last day at the site.

30/07/2019, Fieb Foundation
45950 Casarrubios del Monte, Municipality of Toledo, Spain
From left to right (sitting): me, Salomon, Marta, Paloma, Carmen
From left to right (standing): Alberto, Alex, Cip

If I had to name one thing this trip taught me it would be: never doubt yourself and your capabilities. You can do everything with a bit of effort. Keep exploring, always.

Muchas gracias por todo,

Mavi



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