Spanish senorita says so long to Paynesville

This article submitted by Aaron Ziemer on 7/21/99.

Carmen Mata Carmen Mata has been working at the Paynesville Office of the Melrose Credit Union, in customer service, as part of the International Student Association.

Mata is originally from southern Spain--from a city of about 300,000 called Cordoba. The city is fairly large by American standards, but not as large by European standards.

Mata, 23, will graduate from college when she returns to Spain and passes her final test. She is expected to graduate in September. Her major is business management.

She has been in the United States for about the last 10 months. While she has been in the Paynesville area she has stayed with three different families: Juanita Moser, Rosie and Dennis Lieser, and Ann and Greg Friederichs. She has lived in town, in the country, and by a lake, to experience everything Minnesota has to offer.

Some of her experiences in America include touring both the east and west coasts, she has learned how to snow and water ski, and she has gone to see Duluth.

She said that since she has been here she has learned a lot about business. Mata says there is more competition, more marketing, and more businesses in America than in Spain.,

Carmen Mata...
After living all these four seasons with you people in Paynesville, Minnesota, this girl from Spain is going back to her country with all kinds of great memories.

Here I learned what a real four-season year means with its pretty, different colors that change the Minnesota landscape.

Being used to living in a large city and small apartment, I enjoyed living in a small community with large farms and houses. I also have to say that I have found the real "Minnesota nice" in Paynesville, and I will not forget the people that I met here and their friendliness.

While working at the Paynesville Office of the Melrose Credit Union, I really liked helping everyone here and I hope I brought them a little smile, too, even though it was because of my accent and not too much confusion with the real governor in America, not Clinton, not Jesse but the "dollar."

I will never forget all those wonderful German last name spellings that I did not think I was ever going to be able to properly pronounce.

In my year here I also got to travel to some other places in the states. I used to say I am from Spain via Minnesota. And after that I found myself talking more about Minnesota than my own country.

We all know that our state does not have the best image out there with the cold and now Jesse, but anyway, like a friend of mine says, "We do not want them to really know how friendly we are, so we do not get that many people here." We are fine just like that.

So I agree, and I will always have with me a part of the Minnesota wherever I go.

Now back in Spain I will have to switch my comfortable big American car–that I will also miss–for my small scooter because cars and gas are so expensive in Europe. I will not have to scrape my windshield in the mornings next winter either, but I am not sure that I will miss that.

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