Weird Self-Interview by and with Michele, the EVS Italian Volunteer from Matera

Hi Michele! This is a bit embarrassing: how do you feel being interviewed by yourself? Something like bipolar or borderline, maybe? 

Hi Michele! Actually not at all! You know me better than everyone else so you know perfectly how much I like questioning myself all the time. At least today I can find some linear and straight answers to provide.

I know what I mean and I am perfectly right! 

Oh no, please, don’t talk in that way otherwise our audience (no, this is not majestic plural) could get confused. Try to make some questions as you’re a different person. This should be not so hard to do, I guess: we are accustomed to finding a compromise between all the several, contradictory and opposite sides of Michele.

Ok, I got it. Let’s start with the real interview: who are you, where are you from and where are you going? 

I’m a human being composed of carbon, oxygen, wanderlust, water and some random kinds of alcoholics; my umbilical cord made of rocks is connected with the arcane Italian city of Matera and I’m just trying to become who actually I already am.                                                     

Try to explain to yourself, Michele: why did you choose to apply for this Evs project and what do you think about it at the end of this chapter of your life?

I could provide a lot of superficial answers to this question and all of them would include a small truth: the will to discover new countries, people and culture; the will to make myself helpful in some ways; the purpose to grow up as a person finding new unexpected challenges.

But if I have to be completely honest, the main motivation was the uncertainty about my future. I’m talented in many things but constant in nothing so when I was getting adult and I had to choose to apply for just one specific field I felt kinda mutilated. This is why I needed to procrastinate my usual Italian life getting a hundred kilometres far away from my swampy comfort zone.  The EVS experience could deeply change the perception of your inner self, showing you what really matters – in a good or in a bad way. This is why I would suggest it to everyone is passing through a big confusing Peter Pan syndrome or a delicate period of transition. It’s banal to say, but sometimes you have to lose yourself to get the chance to rediscover a new and enlightening point of view about the big mosaic of your personality.

What kind of works did you do in Italy? Did you find useful in your everyday voluntary tasks your personal attitudes and the skills which you collected in your “previous” life? 

Oh, I like this question! I’m amazed, It’s like you’re able to read in my mind! Ok, I’m getting serious. I strongly love everything is connected with storytelling, so after my master degree in sociology, I did the freelance journalist and the reporter for some musical magazines (especially rock music) and a couple of local journals. I also participated in some literary contests reaching a winning position in three of them.  In behalf of my hosting Association FOR YOU, I did some office work and a lot of tasks connected with the promotion of the EVS program (writing articles and – what a surprise!- interviews; doing presentations in high schools about the voluntary service and so on).

My previous experience as a journalist and storyteller for sure helped me to make my texts more captivating and entertaining for a bigger audience.  During my first training workshop in February I started to rediscover (after more than 15 years of inactivity) my innate skills in drawing and painting, so I decided to create as a personal project a kind of comic book about my messed-up life in Varna, in order to provide to the volunteers of the next voluntary wave an unusual and funny testament concerning how could be the life of an EVS in a foreign-Eastern European country.

I had an exhibition just a few days ago and I collected a lot of positive reviews (especially from Erasmus people). This is amazing because I found a perfect synergy between my everyday work here (promotion of the EVS project) and my personal project. Last but not least, I have to say I exploited a lot of times my amazing magician’s skills as well! Sim Sala Gin!

How you might see yourself in 5 years from now if things went exactly as you planned? 

Taking a warm thermal bath in a gigantic jacuzzi while Moebius and Frank Miller are cleaning the precious parquet pavements of my enormous villa dressed like French maids. Jokes apart, I wanna do something connected with drawing and illustration about my hometown – which will be European Capital of Culture in the year 2019 (the same of Plovdiv). A graphic novel, maybe… I already have tons of ideas to put into practice!

Ok, it’s time to tell our readers what are the craziest, weird, funny, awkward or messy experiences “you” faced during your EVS experience. 

Too many long stories to tell! And some of them are truly compromising, so it’s better to keep a low-profile. Anyway, I cannot avoid mentioning that time I was chased for a Kilometer by a frenzied Bulgarian security guard who wanted to kill me badly; or that time I got awake in a jail of the local police station with a gigantic hangover without remembering anything about the night before. I started to make alcoholic jokes with some of the policemen who surrounded me, they laughed a lot and one of them confessed that his mother is working in my Italian Hometown. Ok, this could be enough I guess. So long and thanks for all the seagulls!                                                                  
Really good interview Michele (my left hand shakes vigorously my right hand). Good luck with your future life in Italy and see you wandering around some weird corners of your mind.