It’s raining in Berlin and someone stole my bed at 3am this evening (crazy, right?). I arrived at 2am to an hostel and chose a 4 bed dorm for my first night. Two beds were free, I picked one randomly. At 3am someone comes in and says: “hey, that’s my bed”. I did that wtf-face but moved to the other option with no resistance. The guy gets my first option preferring a used bed to a new one – sometimes the world is a funny place. Anyway, Berlin is beautiful….
Situated just 25km, a short train ride away from the centre of Lisbon, Sintra is a perfect day trip from the city. Popular with both tourists and locals, this little town boasts various sightseeing opportunities at beautiful ancient monuments. Follow the winding streets to the town and all the way through the narrow roads up the hill, through the beautiful natural woodland to up to the highest point in Sintra to discover some of the most historically rich monuments set in the most natural and beautiful surroundings.
You may have noticed on our discussion groups and on our Facebook groups that we recently asked for our community’s help in voting on a new name for SPEAKs volunteer teachers, and you did not disappoint us! So, we would like to introduce, SPEAK Buddies! The new name for our wonderful volunteer teachers!
SPEAK is a project with aims to connect migrants, refugees and locals through a language and culture exchange programme. Through our sessions and through our events, we encourage our members to integrate and become part of our community, helping those without friends or family in Portugal to feel a sense of belonging in their new city. We have thousands of kind and generous members in our community!
Nelson Mandela once said “If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his own language, that goes to his heart.”
At SPEAK, we agree. We think communication is invaluable, that learning about the language and cultures of others is key. We are now nearly at the end of this semester of SPEAK courses, congratulations to everyone who has made the effort with their classes and is continuing to work hard on their language learning! This week we wanted to talk about inspiring all of you to continue with your learning inside and outside of the classroom.
What is this… copacana? Copacabana? Co…thing that you’re doing? The thing I did was a Capoeira, Afro-Brazilian martial art with elements of dance.
But it doesn’t make sense! It’s neither dance nor a fight! It’s a sect; you’re standing in the circle and singing! Is it ok to do it for Catholics? I’ve heard those and many other questions while practising for two years. Was it a sect? No, I left without any problem. Did it make me incredibly happy and filled me with endorphins and positive adrenaline? Totally. I was addicted, that was what I wanted to do and what I wanted to talk about the entire time. Why?
For many migrants in Portugal, it can be difficult to settle into a new country or city. However, making this move gives people a great excuse to go out and discover more about the new place they’re living in, a chance to dive into the culture and history of their city. But how can we do this on a budget?
I’ll start with a disclaimer:
It’s impossible write everything in one post. I’m trying, but you know how one thing leads to another… In the end I’m just removing stuff like that. This is personal experiences, no objective or general truths won’t be mentioned or revealed. Also thoughts and quality of text can sometimes lose the flow – English is not my native tongue after all ^^ And yeah, grammar nazis – WATCH OUT! End of excuses.