A private, beautiful Library

Managing our Host Family Program, I get to talk even more with you, I-House residents, and I have the privilege to listen to some beautiful beautiful stories.

It happened again recently during one of my “matchmaking sessions” at the Front Desk.

I was going through my folders again and here was Diana asking about her application. She had brought it after 7 pm when I had already left the House and now she was wondering if I had received it. Looking to my forms all I had was a resident from Mozambique looking for a hosting family.

“No Diana, I am sorry, please fill the form out again, all I have is a request from a Mozambican resident.”

“Sure, that’s me, I am from Mozambique.”


Diana Quelhas

Diana Quelhas, the Mozambican you would not expect…

And where I was expecting an African student here comes Diana, born in Africa, in beautiful Mozambique, from a Portuguese father and an Indian mother both looking for a better life in that part of the globe.

Diana is a sweet, beautiful woman and she accepts to answer the questions that immediately pop up in my mind. The dormant journalist in me is now awake and wants to know all about her life in Africa. That’s how I discover Diana is an Epidemiologist and that she has worked with an Italian group I used to work for back in Italy.

She is so gracious to share her feelings and thoughts about being an “unusual” African woman. Her connection with her country, Mozambique, is evident and deep. She doesn’t mind traveling around the world for a bit, she has studied in London and is now in Berkeley. But Africa is the place she wants to go back to, her home, Mozambicans being her people.

She has the calm attitude I have frequently noticed in many African women. I ask her more about her country and her family. The conversation becomes more and more interesting. Talking to her is like reading a beautiful book, I just can’t stop. And I invite you to do the same and, while at I-House, to learn from each other as much as you can.

That’s how I sometimes think of you, amazing I-House residents. As beautiful, interesting, brilliant books I have the fortune to open every now and then to discover new things every day.

And that’s when I know I love my job more and more.

About lilianacardile

For my whole life the world has been a wonderful book and, being an avid reader, I have enjoyed every page so far. Journalist, traveller, internationalist and...gourmet I plan to see it all. At I-House I can do it just sitting at the Front Desk!
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