Since the last days before the trip from Honduras to Uppsala, Sweden, preparations begin not only completing requirements related to the project, but also, with the search for adequate clothing to withstand extreme cold in a Nordic country, something very complicated in a city like San Pedro Sula, Honduras, where the average temperature is 35 degrees Celsius throughout the year, something similar happens with the Brazilian companions who will accompany us on this adventure.
Nothing prepares one for a cold weather of this type in a first world country, until you arrive and find a very well designed, organized, clean and safe city, with an efficient public transport service, road organization, and above all many people who walk daily long distances or ride the road on their bikes.
It doesn’t matter how cold it is, but the warm welcome we receive from our colleagues at Uppsala University considerably reduces the frigid atmosphere outside the hotel, with temperatures between -4 and -12 degrees Celsius, and only 5 hours of sunlight per day.
We hurried to walk from the beautiful and modern Elite Hotel Academi, where the Honduran and Brazilian academic teams stayed, towards one of the modern buildings owned by the University: The Segerstedt/Blåsenhus.
The atmosphere of fellowship is much stronger, since even though we had many previous virtual meetings, we only managed to be in the same place almost two years after starting the project, with the meeting at the University of Padua, Italy.
After finishing the welcome social stage, we continued hand in hand with a very well-organized work schedule, with defined times and very demarcated activities, it was something that allowed us to fulfill all the activities to be carried out during the week.
After we arrived to the building, there is silence in the room (maybe because we are out of breath or just focusing for what’s comes next), Fanny Jonsson begins to explain the reporting of staff costs, travel report and dissemination process, something that undoubtedly requires a lot of concentration.
The following days, we had the opportunity to share more time with colleagues from other countries, generate opportunities to consolidate alliances and visualize future projects, even after the end of the financing of the VAMOS Project, co-funded by the European Commission.
Something that we have loved is the openness of the colleagues from Uppsala University in sharing a bit of their culture through Swedish gastronomy. We had the opportunity to participate in a Swedish Christmas Dinner at the Borgen restaurant in Uppsala, an explosion of new flavors and textures with typical dishes.
Written by Luis Diego Chacón Víquez