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Spain, Madrid. Olivia's home comforts von Klickermann, Christa (eBook)

  • Erscheinungsdatum: 07.09.2015
  • Verlag: more than books
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Spain, Madrid. Olivia's home comforts

What Europe is and what it should be is often the subject of passionate debate. A unique concept whereby several nations are brought together under a humane, democratic system? The strongest economy in the world? A patchwork of different cultures? A tolerant home for freethinkers and the persecuted? For Christa Klickermann, a 58-year-old native of Salzburg who now lives in Hamburg, Europe is, above all, somewhere she can call her own extended home. A loveable continent and a great place to live; a place of myriad cultures that shapes and inspires her in her daily life as a woman, mother and entrepreneur in the midst of life. A place so dear to her heart that she has decided to take a fresh look at Europe and, since 2012, has spent her time journeying across its borders. With a great deal of empathy and openness, she sets out to discover Europe's people, their culture and their modern, everyday lives up close. Madrid, the vibrant capital of Spain, was the twentysixth capital on her journey. Praise for Europeans at heart: Interview with Deutsche Welle TV: 'After reading this book, you will find it impossible not to fall in love with Europe.' Schekker, the German Government's online portal for young people: 'This collection of accounts delivers a brief but brilliant glimpse into life in Europe's incredibly diverse countries, as well as lots of useful information and fabulous pictures that will fill you to the brim with wanderlust. Having taken a literary voyage through the continent via the pages of this book, I can definitely say that I am European at heart. What about you?' Polen-pl.eu, online Polish culture portal: ''The one language that we all understand, and which closely connects all of us Europeans, is the language of the heart: the desire to understand, to empathise, to laugh and find out more about one another.' And that, according to Christa Klickermann, is the key to living together in harmony. With her book, the author hopes to inspire us and imbue us with a sense of confidence about Europe's future, and she more than succeeds in doing both. Her approach is so effective in fact that as a reader you feel tempted to take leave and embark on your own European journey of exploration.' Christa Klickermann has always been passionate about building good relationships both at work and in her private life. For 25 years, she worked on forming effective partnerships with her business clients during her time as a freelance marketing consultant in the field of customer management. Away from work, the 58-year-old Austrian has been happily married for 37 years and is mother to three grown-up children, as well as being a grandmother. In 2012 she said goodbye to her career and fulfilled a long-held dream by moving with her husband from Bavaria to the very north of Germany. She now lives and works in Hamburg as a freelance author, speaker and blogger. On her travels, in her Europeans at Heart book series and in her intercultural panel sessions/readings, she tries to gain a closer understanding of people and their cultures, whilst promoting a peaceful and humane Europe.


    Format: PDF
    Kopierschutz: none
    Seitenzahl: 30
    Erscheinungsdatum: 07.09.2015
    Sprache: Englisch
    ISBN: 9783945875308
    Verlag: more than books
    Größe: 9390kBytes
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Spain, Madrid. Olivia's home comforts

Olivia's home comforts In the past, Spain was synonymous with sun, sea, beaches and a zest for life. Today other buzzwords come to mind: 'property bubble', 'youth unemployment' and 'economic crisis'. But the truth always lies between two extremes, and Madrid is no exception. It had to happen eventually. To spend a whole year travelling around Europe and to not once get caught up in the middle of an airport or train workers' strike would be nothing short of a miracle. It started when my flight from Lisbon was delayed by an hour; it is now late evening and, like many other passengers, I'm sitting here in Madrid airport next to the luggage carousel waiting impatiently for my suitcase and camera equipment to appear. Luckily I made sure I had all the essentials in my hand luggage - something I always do since my suitcase vanished into thin air on a holiday a few years ago. I politely ask a uniformed member of airport staff when things will start moving again, but he simply responds by shrugging his shoulders. A young man next to me sees how perplexed I am and so interprets my question into Spanish; unfortunately, a shrug of the shoulders means the same in Spanish as it does in any other language. Esteban, the name of my helpful interpreter, lives in Barcelona. He went to Lisbon to visit an old friend from university, and now he is here in his hometown of Madrid to pay a quick visit to his parents. Last year he finished his degree in architecture and was very lucky to find a job straight after at a firm in Barcelona. But the position is only for one year. I ask directly if it's a good job. 'It's good in the sense that I can learn a lot and that it's decent work, but in terms of wage, I'm afraid to say it's not good at all. What I earn isn't enough to be able to pay for a family, a car or holidays. But it still allows me to have a glass of wine in a tapas bar every now and then.' Spain: until recently, this had always been a country which people mainly associated with care-free holidays in the sun. But now it is a nation with extremely high unemployment and a place where many families are losing their homes due to insolvency. Today this country finds itself facing the same difficult predicament as Portugal and Greece. The response to a recent job advertisement for a museum guard at the city's Prado Museum is a good illustration of the reality of Spain's situation; eleven positions, each with an annual salary of ?13,000, were advertised and a whopping 18,524 people applied. I highly doubt that they did so simply because they were huge fans of the museum's exhibited work, which features 115 pieces by Goya, 83 by Ruben, 50 by Velázquez, 40 by Brueghel, 36 by Tizian and 32 by El Greco. I mean really - 18,524 applicants for just eleven jobs! For these people it must seem like a fairy-tale from a bygone age to hear that in 1975, when I started my career, finding a job was easy. I tell Esteban that when I headed out into the world, my parents (who were shaped by the experience of war and the 'economic miracle') gave me the following advice: 'If you study hard and work hard, everything in life will always work out well!' - which, more specifically, meant a safe job and enough financial security to be able to afford your own fridge, car and house. I long held this saying to be true, and it became my motto. That is, until I realised that we never really own anything in this world, neither our houses nor our children.

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