Generous, caring and brave are some of the words that describe the people I met during my EMU Study Abroad in Ulcinj, a small town on the southern coast of the breathtakingly beautiful country of Montenegro. My positive experiences with Montenegrins will resonate with me forever and here are a few examples:
- There are no words to fully thank Silvija, who is hugely responsible for opening her native Montenegro to us. As busy as she was, she graciously educated us on the culture, answered even our silliest questions, and went above and beyond to ensure the program’s success. Who does this? A Montenegrin does!
- My daughter and I were whisked off on an unforgettable late afternoon tour by Medina, a gregarious woman who wears many hats, including being a local English teacher. Knowing how busy Medina is, I kept thanking her and telling her to go home to her lovely family. She insisted that she wanted us to experience some of her favorite places and continued to grace us with her time, energy, and fun personality. Oh, and we saw INCREDIBLE areas that we probably would not have seen on our own. Who does that? A Montenegrin does!!
- One of our local drivers (we called Joseph) opened car doors, patiently waited for us to have our morning coffee at the local bakery, happily agreed to our often-inconvenient requests of driving ALL OVER, made helpful connections for us, and MUCH more — with a smile and without keeping the meter running. In fact, on numerous occasions, Joseph refused to charge us for short trips! Who does that? A Montenegrin does!!
- The staff at the Copacabana Beach Restaurant graciously treated our entire Study Abroad team of teachers to a delicious dinner – just to thank us for being teachers! Who does this? You got it. A Montenegrin does!!
I have countless more stories like these. Needless to say, I was appalled to hear anyone describe Montenegrins as aggressive. That was quite the opposite of my experience and anyone who takes the time to get to know the people would surely agree with me.
Thank you to the lovely people of Montenegro!