Hey there, Maria here, three months here already! so fast and also, walking around in shorts and t-shirt does seem like a far away memory. Right now the sky is gray and the sun comes down at 16h, we hear the wind and there are not many leaves left in the trees.

This past month my body claimed the downtime it needed, first I was overwhelmed with the weeks ahead, packed with meetings, administrative paperwork and my personal projects until eventually I got sick (I saw it comming) and that gifted me some rest.

In school I am spending more time in preschool, which I appreciate because it is my favourite age, language is definitely a barrier and yet sometimes it is so surprising how much we can do together with no words, especially gardening related activities, they are much more self explanatory than I imagined, I just start doing and children join and do the same as I (weeding, mulching, building a flower bed with briks, moving earth from one place to another).

– Flower bed where we planted some tulips and other bulbs and plants, to remember that the spring will come! –

We also had an opportunity to exchange and discover how different cultures honor and remember the death at the end of October, a colleague shared how to make masks for the occasion from wood and I showed them a glimpse of how Dia de muertos is celebrated in Mexico.

Definitely my success story of the month was making a fire by myself, I didn’t know it was so easy and there was always someone who knew how to do it so I hadn’t found the chance to try, but last tuesday everyone was busy doing something else and I repeated what I had seen and bam! a fire, felt so happy and self reliant with my new skill.

Unfortunately I haven’t expored much more of Lodz or anywhere else in Poland, school hours plus my personal project are all I do, hopefully I will finish the latter this week and will have some time to discover new places and people, only work is not very sustainable for me.

The last few days my body decided something was too much and I started having sciatic nerve pain, I’ve had it before and its not fun, it’s a little scary because it can be long and its an obligatory break. I’m thankful the school has been supportive of my off time and wish I get better soon. I have my hopes on some great accupuncturist I’ve met thanks to it.

Next month I look forward to being pain free and crafting some bird feeders with the children, continue to learn polish as the kids learn english and to see how so much night is going to affect school rythms and activities. Also I hope to find some time and energy to discover the city I am in, do some not work related activities and meet people outside work.

We will see what the future brings, for now I wish you a merry eclipse season, nourishing times and lots of baking. I will write back in a month to share how fall is treating us here. Oh, by the way, context, I am volunteering in Lodz, in a democratic preschool and school in the forest, within a European Solidarity Corps mission.


Author: European Volunteers in Poland

A blog curated by volunteers taking part in European Solidarity Corps initiative in Poland and coordinated by Active Woman Association

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