Name: Matías Adler
Position: Airplane pilot
How did you come to work for Iberia?
I had dreamed of being a pilot for years, but there were no airlines based in Uruguay. In 2019, I was selected to be part of the Iberia Cadetes training program. At that time I was living in Uruguay, and I had to travel to Madrid for the interview, but I didn’t hesitate for a second. Luckily, the effort paid off.
How have you adapted to the way of life in this country, both at work and personally?
Professionally I feel fulfilled. I had previously worked as a private flight coordinator and as a cabin crew member, so the environment was already familiar to me, and the atypical schedules of this job were never a problem for me either. Personally, I think I have adapted well. The Spanish infrastructure and society have made it a lot easier for me.
How long have you been in this country?
I came to Spain in 2019. After finishing the pilot course, I had a post-pandemic hiatus in Ireland, where I lived from 2021 to early 2022 while working as a cabin crew member.
What do you like the most?
I try to enjoy everything I do.
What is your favourite custom?
Taking my Mate drink on my morning flights. I apologise to all the flight attendants whom I ask for hot water.
What differences do you notice between the two cultures?
Spaniards tend to gather much more on terraces and bars, while in Uruguay people tend to gather more in people’s houses or outdoors. Also, I think that because many families in Spain are scattered throughout the country, they tend to be somewhat less family oriented. Finally, I have to say that Spaniards make much more of an effort to dress up to go out (without disparaging Uruguayans, of course).
Do you know other compatriots who work in Iberia?
Two, a TCP in Level, and a mechanic from La Muñoza.
What do you find here and not in other countries?
An infinitely rich culture, the pleasant familiarity of an idiosyncrasy similar to my own, a shared language, incredible food, and all just a flight away from my family and friends with my own airline.
What is your favourite destination within this country?
A Coruña, for its food, its people, and its resemblance to Montevideo.
A pending day out?
A car trip through northern Spain and a visit to the Canary Islands.
Your ideal Sunday?
In Spain, some Mate in the morning, an afternoon with friends, and an evening spent cooking something delicious. When in Uruguay, a day of barbecue with family and friends with an after-meal that lasts for hours.
What other country would you like to live in?
One always fantasizes about returning to the beloved “little country.”
What do you miss most about your home country?
The closeness of my siblings, parents, grandparents, and childhood friends; some Mate with biscuits on the rambla; the beaches of Rocha in summer.
What is the main thing one learns from living in another country?
Being outside your country you mature faster because you only depend on yourself. Furthermore, living in a country that is not your own makes you very patriotic (I have never listened to so much Uruguayan music as I have since I left).
Have you felt supported in your new country?
Completely. The language, the similar idiosyncrasies, and the people I met upon arrival helped me a lot. To this day they remain close friends.