21 years old Nicola from Bari fell in love with travelling and decided to come to Spain to enjoy life here. Even though many similarities between Spain and italy Nico could see some differences.
- Present yourself
Hello. My name is Nicola Sannicandro. I am 21 years old and I come from Bari, Italy. it is the capital of south-east of Italy and it is quite big. We like going to the beach, partying, cooking that is very Italian.
- Where did you do your Erasmus?
I did it in Ciudad Real which is situated in the Castilla La Mancha region in Spain. I chose this place because I wanted to visit Spain for a long time and it has a good position because it is in the middle so it is easy to travel almost everywhere around Spain. I enjoyed a lot the town, it is a bit small but the position is good and it is cheap. There are many Erasmus students as well so it is not that hard to get to know other people.
- Comparing Ciudad Real to your hometown, can you imagine the rest of your life in Ciudad Real? What do you miss there?
No, I can not. I prefer bigger cities and Ciudad Real is about five times smaller than my hometown but as a one year experience, it was beautiful because it helps me a lot to get to know a different culture, traditions. So, it was a very nice experience for me to stay here some time. I miss mainly my family, Italian food and weather. There is Mediterranean weather in Italy and here it is more continental. Bari is famous for its weather, it is very relaxing there comparing with Ciudad Real.
- What do you study?
During Erasmus, I studied informatic engineering and it is similar to my study program at my home university of Bari because there I study computer technology. The difference is that in Spain it is more about the practice and I really enjoyed it because in Italy we really miss it and it is really needed. Another thing that I really liked was that we had classes in different languages because at university in Ciudad Real there were more English speaking people than in Bari. What helped us in studying because we used different resources in different languages for more effective studying. The main part of the exams was in Spanish but of course, some of them are also in English.
- Did studying abroad improve your personality?
Yes, definitely. I enjoyed it very much because there are many things you can learn just by reading the book but there are much more than you can learn by living it. Comparing studying in Italy and in Spain, there are just a few differences but the most important is that in Spain it was mandatory to visit classes while in Italy it is not. In Italy, at least at my university, I used to go just a week before exams. Sometimes it is better because you can study at home and it is more effective.
- Why did you decide to study abroad?
There was the only thing that was curiosity. Once during the summer holiday, I visited Budapest, Hungary and I enjoyed the feeling to explore new things and see new places. So after that trip, I was more curious about other places and I went to Paris what caused bigger curiosity and I was thinking that maybe another place could be even more interesting. So here I am. I found an opportunity to try Erasmus and it succeeded.
- What about differences between Spain and Italy? Are they similar? Do you have any preferences?
Even there are many things in common, there are also many differences, we are not that much similar. I would say both Spanish and Italian people are very open-minded and it is easy to talk to them. Talking about Spain there are many regional differences. Let’s give an example, the south is more religious and easy-going and north is more industrial. I really enjoyed all the places here even they are different. I like that Spanish people go out very often and that they enjoy their lives. they are very social but not talking only about young people but about all the age groups. Comparing to Italy, we are also social but I think that not that much.
- What about the experiences you got in Spain?
I learned many things in very short time comparing to my life in Italy. I met many interesting people that inspired me. I lived in a shared flat with different people from different countries. We travelled a lot and dot to know each other. I lived with a French and Turkish boy and it was a good experience. They were both very friendly. There were big differences between my culture and Turkish but we managed everything. It was mostly about time differences. They were doing many things at a different time as I did.
- What stayed in you mind from Spain?
Andalusia definitely. Malaga, Cordoba, Sevilla, Granada. They were all amazing but Malaga is number one. It was a trip organised by Erasmus Student Network. I made many international friends, so people of course.
- What do you think about Spanish culture (siesta, parties, tapas)?
I think I like it. Lifestyle is very chilly and relaxing. Tapas tradition is really good here, you can enjoy time with friends. We have something similar in Italy but not like here. It is called Piadina. it is thin bread with meat, salad or tomato inside. I also like the siesta, it is not a that bad idea.