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“Let’s go outside” – Training course or Teddy Bear’s Saga

Regardless, that I’d been at very few Erasmus+ projects (only two actually), I’ve noticed one rather special thing about them: people there get along much faster than they do in a regular context, and this training course isn’t an exception.

The little town of Băile Tuşnad (the smallest town in Romania) and its embracing peace-making atmosphere created a wonderful background for the event. The only spicy element of this idyll were the local bears that frequently and shamelessly had promenades around the place. This fact had a special weight when we (me and Alex (my trip partner)) had learned that we’d arrive there in the middle of the night without being sure where should we go after and if anybody had to meet us.

Foto credit: Vitalie Cîrhană
But let’s talk about the training itself. The first part of it consisted, mostly of theory regarding youth work and a set of outdoor activities for youngsters. But the really interesting things started when we had to apply the theory learned in practice. I still remember that freezing feeling when I was standing in front of a group of innocent children, scared as if they were a pack of grizzlies. Actually, everything went pretty fine, but our trainer (Vitalie) still had some little points to give us a bit of a hard time. Nevertheless, that wasn't the only exciting experience. Walking on a rope between trees, first by yourself, then in pares with somebody and after that a zigzag rope-road with a whole crowd on it and with 3 long sticks as the only support… I tell you, it’s really something. But what a cake without a cherry on top… For the final team-building we had to cross the Olt river on foot. Real water flow, real stones under it, there was no time for jokes (just kidding).

Regarding overall atmosphere, it was just awesome. That little space where we all gathered built really close ties between participants. We felt like a big family where each member came to another reality to clean and refresh his/her mind. But don’t forget about bears. They, literally, were paying us visits during training sessions and night walks through the town (but don’t worry, everyone is alive). I guess that feel of danger is one of the reasons why we got along so well.
What else can I say… That was cool.

P.S. Just keep calm and go ahead with Erasmus+.

By Silviu Ceban