A fun activity that we had was The Most Wuthering Heights Day Ever, September edition, where we had a dance rehearsal with a professional dancer in the office, which then resulted in me being a part of the video that we made after, copying the choreography of Kate Bush in the Wuthering Heights video, even though I was only planning to film it. This counts as another thing I was not so comfortable doing at first, but when I did, I actually enjoyed it (even though I was a little embarrassed, but mostly amused, when, as a surprise, the video was played on the closing ceremony of Stoptrik festival).
After that, we had a full week of critical literacy workshops on participatory democracy, and more precisely, participatory budgeting, in a high school. Depending on the class that was on the workshop, it ranged from very peaceful (and a little boring), to infuriatingly amusing and worrisome at the same time. Because when we went off topic, debating about abortion for example, I got worried for the future of Slovenia after hearing what the boys in one class had to say about it: “I am not against abortion, BUT I don’t think abortion should be used as contraception.” As in the previous critical literacy workshop, I was not feeling very useful, so it might be that this format is not aligned with my skills and abilities – or I just do not feel comfortable working with young adults in this period of life, both mine and theirs.
On the eve of my birthday, I went to Manu Chao concert in a packed Minoriti space. I had a corona scare, so I was keeping to myself and avoiding the crowd just to be safe, but I enjoyed it nevertheless. Manu gave a concert as if he was performing in front of tens of thousands of people, and the crowd was very much into it. During the show, Support Pekarna banner was displayed, and the day after the concert, Manu visited Pekarna and made a short video in support and solidarity.
Next week Noemie, Silvia and I went to mid-term in Zreče. It was more relaxed and less intense than the on-arrival training, and I enjoyed it more. We had a number of activities such as self-awareness through symbolism of seasons, medicinal walk and poetry writing, Ikigai, proactive caffe and we talked about reverse culture shock and what to do with life after ESC. The writing activity was amusing, because we were given a task to write a poem about something in nature surrounding us in 3rd person and strictly observational. I chose to write about ducks in the lake. After they told us to change it to 1st person, and then it turned out that I have affinity towards nesting, swimming in the lake without care and catching bugs and fish, flying to the south and quacking. Ikigai, a Japanese term intersecting what we want, what we are good at, what do we like to do and for what we can earn a living, was not that eye-opening, but was still an interesting activity which reminded me again that I should write more. Proactive caffe was also nice, because I volunteered to present my project (which I usually would not do) and I got some good insights and ideas. I still am not clear as to what to do after ESC, but I am also not worried, which is good (I guess?).
Immediately after Zreče, it was already time for Stoptrik festival of stop-motion animation. It started with a team meeting and a press conference, and after that was pretty intense but rewarding at the same time. We were preparing the space in Vetrinjski and embellished the courtyard with decorations in the nicest shade of pink. Then I was involved welcoming some guests, carried a lot of equipment – both for the screenings and concerts, been involved in preparation for the concerts, and then carried some more. I also helped with cooking twice, which I enjoy doing – and I got some new insights in vegan food, and learned that tempeh is very tasty. I partied every night, and stayed up late (or early, depending on the perspective). I danced a lot and had a good time. But then I was also suffering in the mornings because of lack of sleep and excess of alcohol. However, that is no one’s fault but mine. I am, hopefully, planning to be involved with the festival next year as well, so I the only thing I would change is to go to bed earlier in order to be more functional and useful the following day. The selection of the animations was excellent, with some very good films, but none of them bad. The projections are interesting because the viewers rate the animations, and the one with the best score wins the grand prix. I had a chance to get to know better and connect more with the amazing Stoptrik team, which felt nice. The people on the festival enjoyed it a lot, and it seems it was a very successful 12th edition. My dear friends from Bosnia also visited me during the Stoptrik for the first time since I am in Slovenia, so I got to enjoy it with them.
Another thing of note in September, is that Silvia, Noemie and I went to trgatev – grape picking – which is an old Slovenian tradition (and a ritual I guess). We were invited by a Slovene volunteer, Maja, to the beautiful countryside, on a beautiful day, with very nice and welcoming people. The work was not hard, and it was enjoyable, we ate and drank, acquired more knowledge about wine-making, got some wine to go, and people genuinely appreciated our help.
September was very eventful, enjoyable and it went insanely fast. So, I am writing this blog in order to remember the eventful September. ‘Till next time.