Speaking European Tova Lind

Tova Lind Credit: Tova Lind

At just 19 years old, Tova Lind has already embarked on a remarkable adventure, leaving behind her homeland of Sweden to follow her passion for horses in Spain.

Fresh out of Mälardalens Ridgymnasium, with a major in agriculture and horse knowledge, Tova’s love for equestrian activities, especially show jumping, has always been a driving force in her life. “I did more show jumping because that’s what I thought was the most fun,” she shares.

A Perfect Opportunity

Tova’s journey to Spain began when a school friend mentioned a job opportunity that seemed made for her. “She thought it would be perfect for me, and I didn’t want to spend the winter in Sweden,” Tova says.

According to her, with Sweden being part of the European Union, the logistical aspects of relocating and working in Spain were smoother, unlike the challenges faced by non-EU nationals.

As the groom for the MT Horses company, Tova’s role involves taking care of horses and the facilities where they reside. Her responsibilities include riding and training horses destined for sale, often to Sweden. “We generally don’t sell to Spain,” Tova explains.

The Challenges of Living Abroad

Relocating to a new country can be an intimidating challenge for many young Europeans. For Tova, however, it was an exciting one. “I knew that I was going to work for Swedish people and I already had someone I knew here so it was more exciting,” she admits. “At first, it was hard just having the guts to get out and do stuff, particularly when I didn’t know the language.”

The language barrier remains a significant hurdle for many expatriates and immigrants, and for Tova, it was no different as English is not widely spoken in her field. “In my line of work, there aren’t a lot of people who know any English, so communication has been difficult from time to time,” she says.

Despite these challenges, Tova is passionate about her work and the horse world, even though it demands long hours and constant availability. “For me, work is pretty much like any other job, you have good and bad days,” she reflects.

Tova Lind riding horse during training
Credit: Tova Lind

Building Connections

Making friends has been a mixed experience for the 19-year-old from Sweden. “It really depends on who you are as a person,” she says. Though she doesn’t have family in Spain, her boss, her boss’s family, and her housemates have become like an extended family, providing a support system that has made her new life more manageable.

Looking ahead, Tova hopes to remain in Spain for the long term but wishes to visit Sweden more frequently. “I’ve been back twice since I moved,” she says. For Tova, Spain has become a new home, offering both professional growth and personal fulfilment.

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Written by

Talyta Franca

Talyta Franca, Class 2026, Northwestern University in Qatar.