YMX: The first Orientation

I’m back after a very, very long hiatus. I’ve not been blogging for three months using blogger and almost  8 months using wordpress. I’ve been preoccupied much with other stuffs and I’ve been losing my knack for writing.

Anyway, I’ve decided to revisit my passion as a blogger because I feel like I want to share to the whole world the wonderful opportunity that I had been given. The Young Minds on eXplore or YMX for short give me an opportunity to travel abroad and visit two of Cebu’s sister’s cities located in Netherlands and Belgium. Most importantly, YMX gives me an opportunity to serve my city. Going to these two European countries will significantly open my minds to the cultural differences which will perhaps catalyze my maturity,and independence and will also help me know what I can do for my own city. Being given the opportunity meant being given also huge responsibilities. The travel is not the culmination of the hard work of preparations but will only be just a portion of the processes a delegate will undergo.

Last Saturday, February 4, 2012, the YMX delegates had the first group dynamic activities to help us get to know each other better and to help us understand team work better.

The delegates trying to untangle themselves.

In an activity similar to the children’s game Dr. Quack Quack, where we try to untangle ourselves until we form a free circle, tangles served as metaphors for problems. In this activity, we learned that a problem of one is the problem of the whole group and that we cannot just detach from each other. There is no ‘I’ in TEAM.

After a series of group dynamics, we had an orientation about the Dutch culture which heightened our excitement yet triggered a little apprehension among us.

The Dutch culture is very, very different from Filipino culture. I’ve never thought about culture as one of the adversities of the trip, but actually, I think it would be the biggest adversity of all. It takes a lot of openness and flexibility to overcome culture shock when I reach the Netherlands, but at least the orientation provided an overview.

One of the most interesting facts I’ve learned about the Netherlands is that it is a flat land  and most of area is located below sea level. But the Dutch managed to make land liveable by constructing dikes. This demonstrates how advance engineering and architecture is in Netherlands. As an architecture student myself, I’m looking forward to learning more about this.

I’m also looking forward to Queen’s day. It’s a very big festival in the Netherlands and I can’t wait to witness it.

Well, I guess this will be all for now. Stay tune.