My trip to Skopje – Part 1

Two weeks ago I took some free days from the office and had a short vacation in Skopje. First I wanted to participate on Wednesday to a conference called Techflow which was hosted by Endava, a public technology company. The tickets were free so I applied online and received online the confirmation. So my plan was to go on Wednesday around noon and stay until Sunday, because on Saturday night there was a little festival called Taksirat, which I really wanted to participate at.

So I have a friend from Kavadarci, who told me she knows some other EVS volunteers in Skopje, and she could talk with them to see  if they could host me for 4 nights. Luckily for me, they had a big apartment and had a free room for me, so I talked to the volunteer in Skopje and she told me I can come and stay free of worries. This is another great thing about the EVS, that you can make new friends all the time that can help you in different situations.

Even though I had  everything prepared from Sunday evening, on Tuesday my coordinator called me telling me that there’s an NGO Fest in Skopje, and if I want to participate with a colleague from the office, since I will already go there on the same day . So I was really excited about it and went on Tuesday morning at 6 with the bus to Skopje. As it turned out, the NGO Fest was hosted by the organisation of the volunteer I was supposed to stay at in Skopje, and moreover their stand was right next to ours ! Also there I met new people from different NGO’s, for example there is a cool one that works with bicycles and does all kind of activities related to this, I met with another volunteer from Kumanovo which I met at my on-arrival training in Skopje, I participated to a little Instagram contest for the American Corner organisation, in which I won a cup as a present !

After the fest finished, I went to eat something and searched for the location of the Techflow event. The google map didn’t work properly, so I asked a girl on the street if she knew where the building was, and she said she was going at the same event, so we went together. At the event there were 3 speakers, and the topics were: THE QUANTUM FUTURE OF UX, LEARNING TO WALK – A SHORT STORY OF DEEP REINFORCEMENT LEARNING and  UNTANGLING QUANTUM COMPUTING . It was very interesting, and another cool thing that happened was that I asked a question to one of the speakers, and the organizers gave some gifts to people who asked questions, so I received a bag with something inside. So two weeks before the event my bluetooth speaker broke down, and a week before the event I lost my headphones. So I was really happy to see that inside the bag there was a bluetooth speaker and a pair of headphones,plus an agenda and a pen, but for the first two I was really amazed that I got them.

Having a great mood after this I went on to meet my with my hosts in Skopje. They  work for a pretty cool project in Skopje, on creating a monthly magazine with different articles. So we spent the evening at their appartment resting after the long day.

 

On Thursday I woke up late, and spent some time at the apartment, then went to visit their office, which is just 1 minute away from the apartment. After this I walked around the neighborhood a bit and then went to pick up my prize from the American Corner with a volunteer from the apartment who also won. It was interesting because the American Corner is like an organisation which has an place pretty close to the center, and it is like a hangout place for people interested in the American culture. They have a lot of books, comic books, Cd’s, movies. Moreover, they organize debates and different events there, and the member card is free if you live in Skopje, so you can participate to the events and also rent anything they have there. My friend rented a book and he took for me a comic book too, and after we went to get a snack in the center. After we got to the apartment and rested .

Written by: Catalin POPSOR