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Best Global Mind Blog: "Encontrar tu hogar en el mundo"

By Stephanie Thomas

We’re excited to introduce you to the best Global Mind blog: Stephanie Thomas’ "Encontrar tu hogar en el mundo" (Finding Your Home in the World).

Stephanie Thomas managed to share a unique cultural experience that did not happen in the hotel she is doing her internship in, but in the middle of the beautiful city of Madrid. It’s lovely reading about the cultural diversity as she connected both the Greek culture and the Spanish culture well with each other. She writes in a story-telling way that captures your attention and ensures a very detailed and personal story. Check it out for yourself and read her blog below.

Finding Your Home in the World 

There comes a point in life when you wonder where you really fit in and where you want to build your home even for a short time. Having lived in three different countries and experienced a variety of cultures and tastes. It has not always been easy for me to adjust and embrace change. But for the first time, I have found Madrid to be the one location that appears to connect everything. It is a city with perspective and a future that accommodates people of all backgrounds and ages. 

The Allure of Madrid

Madrid has mesmerised me in every way, from its thought-provoking architecture that inspires reflection in a language of its own to its convenient and easy-to-use transportation that develops a sense of direction and ease of adjustment. Since arriving here, I have encountered some of the most generous and hospitable individuals who have been of tremendous help to overcome challenges and embrace Spanish culture fully. Surprisingly, it is often the people least connected to you who extend the greatest kindness. One such example is a kind man who works at Santander Bank. Despite having no prior acquaintance with me, he went above and beyond to assist me for three hours in sorting out all my paperwork, enabling me to promptly start my internship. This act of kindness was not obligatory, but he recognized the difficult situation I was in and offered his support. In Spain, the laid-back attitude towards bureaucracy can be stressful and time-consuming but encounters like this remind me of the generosity of spirit that exists here, even in unexpected places. This is beautiful and amazing, and it reminds me a lot of my homeland Greece. 

Comparing Cultures

Although Greece and Spain are different, there have been multiple times when I have drawn comparisons between them because of their comparable lifestyles. The relaxed Mediterranean pace that surrounds both settings, the friendliness of those who embrace you. It is an amazing sensation to see such similar places to flourish differently. I have never felt so at ease living abroad without mourning my past. Having not been exposed to this polychronic culture in my two years in the Netherlands, I have truly missed it. Despite my extended stay in the Netherlands, I feel that Spain suits more my personality. It appears I can get along with its people better without misinterpreting their emotions, mannerisms, and lifestyles, and it is not as limiting to my potential. It could be that I do speak the language rather well and, again, that I was raised in a warmer climate where people are generally more accepting of difference. I have never felt out of place exploring unfamiliar streets in Madrid, even on my first day. As my roommate nicely stated I have finally found a home outside my own country – “ encontraste tu hogar en el mundo”- a phrase that deeply touched me and I could truly relate.

All in all, it is just the beginning and I hope to encounter new adventures during this fruitful internship.

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