Gabor from Hungary in Cracow
Could you tell a little about yourself?
Cześć :) I'm Gabor. I was studying in Budapest before I came to Krakow and I've just had my degree so it was in February 2012. I was studying at Corvinus University of Budapest, but I graduated from economic policy that was my major. Then I realized that there is an opportunity to get scholarship and go to another country, it was offered by Wyshengrad Form. I simply took that chance and came here for 6 months. Then I've started to regret I didn't decide to stay longer, because I could have this also for four semesters. I think it was because I really didn't want to research, but just wanted to take a break after university before start working. Here in Krakow I could do it perfectly.
Why have you chosen Cracow/Poland as a city/country of your Erasmus experience?
I was in Krakow two times before only for holidays. Maybe it's going to be a typical answer, but I know only two reasons why guys come here. Firstly - they have a girlfriend here, secondly - they want to have a good party, because here you have a lot of options. Frankly, when I was studying I didn't really care about my studies and preferred to go to party than to learn anything. But now I'm working so it had to change.
When you came to this country what was your first impression of it and of the people?
When I first came to Krakow, my bus was 5 hours late because of the snow. It was 15th of February and everywhere was so much snow, that my first impression was - Wow! It must be really hard to survive here. But as far as first impression of Polish people concerned, I've already had it some time ago, when I was in Amsterdam. That was the first time when I've met a lot of Polish people. It is really true that you are everywhere guys ;) But resuming to my story, there was one big party organised by Polish people. It was great prepared, crazy party with a sea of vodka, but the main point was I met there plenty of amazing people, who I'm still friends with.
What kind of stereotypes about Poland exist in your country? Do you agree with them?
In Hungary we like Polish people, even if you never met any Polish people you just said " Pole and Hungarian - two good friends, joint fight and drinking are their ends." And what is funny that in Hungary when people know this sentence they know it both ways - in Polish and in Hungarian, here you know this only in Polish... But I think it is because Hungarian is just too hard for you.
What are the main differences between life and studies in Poland and your home country?
I didn't notice any spectacular differences between living or studying here and in my home country. Before I came here, I was conducting my own research about social enterprises here in Poland, so I came here to finish it.
Have you noticed any cultural differences?
If yes, did they have any impact on your stay.Well, I think that there is not many differences between our cultures, because we are all living in the central Europe. But what I have to say, because of my Polish friends from Amsterdam, I expected Polish people to be more open, but that's not really what I felt at the beginning. However, people at the university are completely different, very kind, friendly and open-minded. There are some typical things that I don't understand as that when you are at the bus stop. The bus comes and the doors open, so people want to get out, but others already standing in the door preventing them from going out!
Did any Polish custom surprise you?
You have a crazy drinking culture, for sure, sometimes you can drink vodka like a water. Hungarian also drink a lot, but sometimes I see the big difference in Polish people behaviour before and after drinking. Even if somebody is dull and haven't got interesting personality when is sober, after few drinks became very friendly and talkative. Or very aggressive.People usually travel while studying in a foreign country.
Did you visit any other places in Poland? Which one was your favourite and why?
I visited Gdansk, Toruń, Olsztyn, Wroclaw and Warsow. I have been in Malbork also, which I consider one of the most beautiful and I really loved the castle built by Germans. But I think my favorite is one Wroclaw, I find it as the most Polish of every Polish cities I've already seen. The ambiance there is really great.
Did you taste Polish cuisine? What dish you find as the best and what as the worst?
I am here for such a long period of time, that I think I've already tried everything. My favourite Polish dish is beef roulade with stuffing, we have something similar in Hungary but the way how you preparing this dish is the best one. What I've noticed, you like to use a lot of cucumbers and mushrooms.
If you had to say 3 things that you associate Poland/Poles with, what would they be?
I associate Poland with, hmm... vodka and beautiful girls, for sure. And what else? What I've realised that a lot of people want to start their own company. So that's what I associate Poland with, the companies, entrepreneurship and also the ones who don't want to do this, they prefer to try by themselves and leave the country. That's also a kind of enterprise to just make up your mind and leave. However, many of them come back, so they can bring back to the home country whole knowledge they get from abroad.
So, if you could choose again, would you still decide to come to Poland? Why/Why not?
Sure, of course that if I could make my choice once again, I would come to Poland - and to Cracow - again. I really like this place, I feel very good here and I don't regret any of time spent here. I am here for such a long time that I think it means more than any words. ;)