Living with people from around the world is full of questions and you learn more about the world than you ever could from a school textbook.
Staying at Voluntario Global’s volunteer house in Buenos Aires, I spend every day with other volunteers from loads of different countries: Germany, France, Australia… the list goes on. Although this can mean repeating your sentences a few times or needing to attempt some rusty translations, I am so grateful to have this experience and I love how living with people from other countries has opened my mind. So here are a few of the best things about living with people from all over the globe:
1: Learning new languages!
Whether it’s just learning the simple hello and goodbye, a few colloquial phrases, or perfecting a second tongue, living with people from other countries is one of the best ways to learn a new language. Getting constant practice in a relaxed and friendly environment is much more fun than being sat at a desk in front of a teacher counting to 30. You’ll also find yourself learning more useful and practical phrases, the vocabulary that you need most in real life situations. Besides, there’s no better person to make those silly and slightly embarrassing beginner’s mistakes around than a friend!
2: Trying new food!
We all love our comfort food, right? But we must admit that it’s great for our taste buds to experience some new and more exotic foods. Living with foreign people helps both of these things. We can indulge in our home comforts whilst teaching others what we like to eat at home and we also get an opportunity to try some traditional dishes from other countries through housemates who are keen to share their home favourites too.
3: New card games!
For me a great alternative to endlessly scrolling through my phone is playing a good game of cards with a group. Unfortunately, sometimes I find that at home we get bored of playing the same handful of games repeatedly. Another great gift that comes with new foreign friends is their new card games! Although it can cause a confusing half an hour of getting our heads around some different rules, it’s refreshing to be enjoying something new
4: Endless conversation!
With so many differences in culture, food, politics, traditions and millions of other issues, living with people from other countries means never running out of topics to discuss. Everyone is keen to teach others a bit about their country, what they usually do and how people usually behave, and it gives us a chance to reflect on home whilst being far away. We begin to open up our minds to a different way of life and see through the eyes of others.