Facing new challenges
by Alessandra Caminati - Application Engineer
It’s been already two and half years since I came to Austria …amazing how time flies!
At the beginning of this adventure, my plan was to come for a one-year-internship to have this experience at least once in my life and of course also to learn, to enjoy and then go back to Peru. I always considered myself as a very Latin person: I love my country, my people, my culture, the Peruvian food, the music, etc. So for me it was clear that I would go back after one year... well, that was more than two years ago. Now I am talking about staying at least another two years or maybe longer.
If someone asks me what motivates me to stay even longer, I would say “the challenges”. The challenge to speak another language, the challenge to understand another culture, the challenge to live and adapt this new culture, the challenge to work with completely different people, the challenge to eat different food, the challenge to live during winter (here was the first time I saw snow), the challenge to practice and try another sport … everything is different!! Even inside a disco, which for me is a place to dance, but here it is a place to drink without dancing!
One part of my decision to stay longer was also my job at TGW. It was back in Peru when I realized that I love the logistics world and even more to research and to analyze data. I knew that in Peru it is difficult to find such a job, so now it is great to realize that thanks to the opportunity at TGW and especially at the Solution Development department I found exactly what I was looking for. Below I am sharing with you some new experiences that I have made here: drinking Glühwein at a Christmas market (of course!), snow and snowboarding, changing seasons, hiking up a mountain and being on top!
I have to say that this experience is unique and what I like most is the opportunity to get to know people not only from Austria, but also from Brazil, USA, Spain, China, Colombia, Germany, Croatia, UAE, UK, etc. People with completely different cultures, mentalities, languages … everything! I love this and of course I have to thank TGW for this. There were many times during lunch at the company restaurant when I realized that I am in the same room with people from eight different countries – or even more! And many times we talked about the funny “misunderstandings” that happened between us because of our cultural differences. Even the way we laugh through WhatsApp chat can be misunderstood!! The international way is “haha”, the Spanish way is “jaja”, for some of course that doesn’t mean anything, but for some others it is not a nice expression. ¡Cuidado!
One more thing that I really like about Austria is the fact that I just have to drive one hour to arrive in another country. Everything is really close! In South America this would not be possible, the countries are bigger and the connections between them are not so good. Also the differences between the countries are not as big as here. There we have a similar culture, the same language (except for Brazil), etc. Here you just need a few hours of driving to be in another country with a completely different culture, another language, different infrastructure, people, etc. I am always surprised about that.
Unfortunately, there are some difficulties as well: to miss your family and friends (for me there is no one better than them). To fly at least 19 hours to see them again is not very funny. However, I am very thankful for the people here, TGW and the country in general. After all, there is a reason, why I am still here.