Monday, June 27, 2016

Good-bye for now

By Chiara Baiocco

We have been back for more than a week and I have not yet been able to process Kosovo, everything we have witnessed and the things that have happened.
So much has changed. I went from not knowing anything about Kosovo to spending an hour on Skype explaining Kosovo’s history to a friend of mine and the next hour describing her everything we have done while there. I went from trying to recover from Capstone stress to receiving my grade. From anxiously wondering about next year to finally getting an offer from the University I was waiting for the most.
Kosovo was a rollercoaster of information and a great way to conclude my three years at AUC. I have gotten to know some people better and realising how lucky we are to be part of a university that is ready to sponsor this kind of projects. All the organizations we have visited have contributed to give us a clearer idea of Kosovo as an independent country and the problems connected to the country being so young.
I still feel like I know so little compared to the complexity of the situation and for this reason I would love to go back to try and capture a little bit more of Kosovo’s essence.
I especially enjoyed visiting the smaller organizations as we were able to talk to the people that had been there from the start until now. It was also easier to get an idea of what they do concretely. I think the trip could benefit from spending more time in these organizations and witness the work they do daily.
I also really enjoyed spending time at the lakes, I felt like everyone was so relaxed and was trying to elaborate all the information we had been exposed to during the day in those moments of tranquillity. Also just walking around the streets of Prishtina are some of the best memories I will cherish from this trip. We were also lucky enough to experience the city in the time where enthusiasm for football matches was exploding and it was so interesting to see how the city transformed itself when the matches were on. I remember sitting at a bar overlooking one of the main squares where the football was shown and seeing the streets completely still when the match was playing and then suddenly revive themselves during half time or when the match was on. It was like if time had stopped and everyone united in screams of joy or disappointment depending on the progression of the match and then everyone going back to their normality as soon as the match was done.
I feel like I will be able to reflect and clearly realise everything I have experienced in Kosovo only when these days of stress and overwhelming emotions will be over. Off to graduation tomorrow and still keeping track who made an offer to buy my bed. I am sure that I will always carry a piece of Kosovo in my heart for years to come, and thank you to everyone who directly contributed to make this trip the truly amazing experience that it was.  

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