From Italy to Sweden: a new chapter of my life

Hej everybody! Or perhaps I should say ‘ciao!’. I’m Francesco, I come from Italy – even though many people I’ve met so far have told me at first blush: “Are you French?”. After almost two months since my departure and the beginning of the courses, I should be missing my home and my country, right? Well, probably it’s not my case.

I’ve been living and studying in Gothenburg, and I feel like I’m home. I may not speak Italian all the time – and this might affect myself somehow, when it comes to express totally myself – but it’s not a big problem since I speak English and I’m trying to learn Swedish – slowly, because of many things to study and to do! I expected, to a certain extent, that my experience here would have been remarkable; what I didn’t expect was that it would have turned out to be even more than that.

Velomobile - Francesco Barbati

I took this picture during a velomobile race at Bananpiren, after few days I arrived in Gothenburg. 

Anyway, why Sweden? And why Gothenburg? The last year has been for me so intense and full of great experiences. I have lived in UK and Denmark, where I’ve carried out some Erasmus traineeships. Once back to Italy, I felt that something was still there, inside me: a feeling coming from abroad was trying to call me back; a feeling going fast like a velomobile, keen to reach another destination.

I had the chance to visit briefly Sweden twice. Last year I went to Stockholm, and few months ago to Malmö. In both cities, I straight away felt something positive. In April, I took my final decision: I wanted to carry on my ‘Nordic’ experience as well as to improve my academic skills.

I chose Sweden.

Although I don’t deny that Stockholm was my initial choice, when I found out the Master in Communication arranged by the University of Gothenburg, I immediately wanted to apply. I didn’t know anything about the city, except for something I read previously surfing on the web: a multicultural and international city, plenty of cultural places and nature. A perfect combination for me, especially regarding my interests and my personality.

So, I decided to take an unconventional route and leaving Italy on a ship. You can have a proper look below at the picture I’ve taken: guess which was mine?

1Gothenburg regatta 2016

Once got in that, I reached the helm, and very confident I told myself: “Let’s do that!”

2Gothenburg regatta 2016

Jokes apart, the flight went smoothly and these pictures were taken during one of the first events that I’ve attended here in Gothenburg, called the ‘North Sea Tall Ships Regatta’. It was great to see so many ships coming from different parts of Europe and the world! Moreover, I had the chance to eat some French crêpes there: a good way to reconcile myself to my French alter ego!

Here we are Sweden. And here we are fellow readers: I can’t wait to share with you other stories of mine and my perspective on Swedish world!

A presto!


Written by Francesco

09 Oct 2016