This Sunday: Athletic Bilbao – Osasuna, a Basque derby in San Mames. As a sports fan I know that there is a lot more at stake than only three points for the win. Derby’s are matches on its own, a matter of being able to say that you are a supporter of the best team in the region. Lucky as I am, I will be a visitor. I’m looking forward to experience some real pride that always is in the air during those kind of matches. There will be plenty of it I’m sure, knowing that Basque people are a proud nation.
For at least one month already everybody is talking about El Clasico. This Monday Real Madrid will visit F.C. Barcelona. Football fans all over the world can’t wait for the match to start, probably because both rivals aren’t giving each other an inch in La Liga. Peopl e believe that this particular match is decisive for who will crown himself to the national champions at the end of this season. And, besides all of that, there is a personal battle to be fought: Who is the best player of the world? Is it Barca’s Messi, or Real’s Ronaldo? Especially on TV these kind off speculations are main subjects. On second thought, not everybody is dreaming about the clash. On TV and on the streets here in the Basque Country I haven’t heard a word yet about the clash. Reminds me again that I’m indeed in the Basque Country, absolutely not in Spain.
Today while I was watching interview with Viktoria and Arwen about their Erasmus experience I was thinking that we are here already for two and a half months and its a lot and yes we have seen a lot here too! I remember when I first came here. I knew so little Spanish and nothing about Euskara. (Now my language skills are better though…I hope xD)Before going to the Basque CountryI didnt know what to expect from this place. Yes, I have read about it, asked former Erasmus student who was here about three years ago, but still you never know till you experience it yourself.
And after I came here I have met a lot of nice people, Erasmus and Basque too. I am happy that we have such a nice group. We can have fun together, talk and walk around, climb some mountains maybe). If you have a bad mood they will cheer you up. I really appreciate that. University is also nice, right now media students have only one day of studies which makes it all better!Yay! But we still have one mounth more and there is definitely will be more to see and to do!
I think that I have visited Vitoria 3 times already. But every time that I am there I see there something new. I dont know why, but I find this sity more comfortable than Bilbao for example. I like Bilbao too, but I think that Vitoria is smaller and somehow ¿cozy? and this is the reason why I like it there.
I like to walk on its streets and I like the architecture of the city. In Vitoria there is old part of the city and modern as well. There are beautifu cathedrals and churches which belongs to different centuries and have different architecture styles. While I was doing my first video project for the University I thought that I have seen most of the city, but then I saw some pictures in my flatmate and found out that there is a lot yet to see. So I am hoping that before going back to Estonia I will visit this sity one more time:)
Names in BC are very interesting and also very difficult. I’ve never heard all these names before: Iñaki, Beñat, Ander, Aitor, Itxasu, Lander, Gorka, Olaz, Iker, Eikaiz (like the name of our favoreti bar), Eneko, Nekane, Itziar, Xabier, Mikel, Txema, Idoia, Maialen, Leira and so on.
So, it is nothing to do with typical Spanish names and ,also, it is impossible to pronounce and, more over, to remember them. A lot of names you can hear everyway, they repeat very often.
And why people dont want to look for something more special and to put more effort on their’s child?
Muy, muy trankilos busses are here.
I dont know why, but sometimes it is really funny. In Mondragon, for example, are three or four bus stops and in each stop is written the same timetable. At the begining I was thinking: “Why the busses are always late?”. So, after I understood a point. They just decided at what time bus should be in Mondragon and just put the time and nobody cares that, actually, this bus can spend in a village 15 minutes.
You dont have anything to do just to wait. So, now then I want to take a bus, for example, at 10.40 I can calmy walk at this time on my way and take a look if there are some nice coockies in bacary.
But then you are in a different city, situation gets harder. The last time bus from Bilbao to Arrasate-Mondragon didnt come and we (Natalja, me and Wilco) waisted two hours of our time, after 7 hours of working, in a bus station.
Of course, we went to a bar and took something to drink, but still….. muy trankilo!!
Today, me and Viktoria climbed the Udalaitz mountain. It was great! I must say that I was impressed by its beauty and by the surroundings around it. We did such long climbing for the first time so for us it was tiresome but none less exiting.
We came to the foot of the mountain by car with our basque friend Gorka who showed us the way. So after we parked the car our journey has started. It is funny but at the very begining we felt tired as if already reached the top and were breathing hard. There was a time when we thought that maybe we cant go furthere, but then we thought that we cant stop by now in the middle of our way.
I think that it is really tiring to climb any mountain, and we were told that Udalaitz is one of the hardest to do it. But we kept going on,ofcourse we did some stops, we rested a bit and continiued our way. When we reached the top we felt like heros. It was so worth it! The view from the top was incredible and inside you feel many emotions. But it was windy today, that at times we thought that wind will blow us away, but despite it everything went nice. After when we came back from the top of the mountain
we were sitting in the restaurant, drinking coffee and thinking that life is great.
I dont know about other villages or sities, but here in Arrasate people really like to do a lot of spors, especially to climb the mountains. My local friend is so active, that sometimes I think he is crazy. Bicycle, mountain, football, poker, swimming, work and fiesta, that can be almost all at the same day. Sometimes I join him just because I am curious (I am not really sport fan).
So, today me, Natalja and him went to Udalaitz. Some of my friends maybe couldnt believe that, but I did it!!! It was very hard at first, but then my body got used to pressure I felt myself better. Udalaitz – one of the biggest mountain in Gipozkoa. The view from the top is increadable. And there were a lot of people. Once I was at enother place and there were so many people, so I couldnt even really enjoy the nature.
In my country people go more to jums because we just dont have mountains or so many beatiful places. And ofcourse the weather – last 2 days it is just paradise. Dont want to go back to cold Estonia (there can be 5 degrees and a little snow with rain).
Happiness comes in small doses. Happiness for example can be in family, friends or hobbies. Everybody has their own preferences. During my stay here in the Basque Country I’ve noticed once more that for me true happiness is also in sunlight. As I already told in a previous blog, the weather was gray the last couple of days. Today the weather recovered. Clear blue skies and golden sunrays. The overwhelming and rich feeling of the sun it’s warmth on my skin is indescribable. Maybe I should emigrate to warmer climates, knowing that in Holland we only can count on sunlight during summer.
I wouldn’t say I’m a high skilled English writer or speaker, but as far as I know, I can express myself well enough. Mostly that is because I and practically all youth in Holland started watching English television, listening to English songs, playing English games and so on, on a young age, and still we are exposed to English every day. Some words are even integrated in our language. All that is what has the biggest influence on our ability to speak and write English, not education. A huge difference with the Basque Country. Teaching English at a young age ofcourse is a good thing to do, but considering every English show or movie has been synchronized with Spanish voices, makes the impact of teaching very small. If I ruled the roost, these shows and movies would be broadcasted in English. It helps developing your English, and besides that, originals are always best.