Wednesday, August 28, 2013

days > 20 -- adapting

advice for future exchange students #9:
at the beginning of your exchange, you will probably have nothing to do. fill that nothing up with food, language practice, traveling, and getting lost in cities. oh, and more food.

things that have happened in the past 10 days:
  • After my first 10 days, my host family stopped speaking English to me. Now it's about 90% Deutsch (and 10% of what my host mom calls "emergency English": explanations, clarifications, etc.) Not surprisingly, I've learned a lot of German in the past couple weeks.
  • In fact, I've learned more German in the past 20 days than I did Spanish in the first year. And my Spanish class was exceptionally good. I think this has more to do with the constant immersion than it does with my actually being good at the language or learning anything from the German class...
  • On the 18th, I had my first Rotary Youth Exchange conference in Switzerland. We had the introduction, some rules, and the D-lecture (which I have basically memorized by now, haha) but it was fun to meet the other exchange students. Plus... PINS.
  • I successfully went shopping in a Swiss mall. Granted, I didn't say much except for "hello" and "thank you", but I did teach myself the names of a lot of new trends. No idea how that could possibly come in handy, but hey, it's language practice.
  • My Deutsch Kurs "field trip" was a trip to the Basel zoo! It was fun. Pictures to come, but there are quite a few so I have to sift through them (unless you'd care to see several hundred pictures of depressed-looking fish).
  • I started dance classes officially last Friday... and I'm constantly amazed at the generosity of the wonderful people around me. 
  • It's now my third week of German class. Not exactly sure how I feel about this?
  • Watched Ich-Einfach Unverbesserlich 2 (translation: Despicable Me 2) in German in Deutschland as part of my little sister's birthday party. She turned 11!
  • I don't understand how anyone, anywhere, could possibly dislike Swiss/German/French bread. Have they no tastebuds???
  • Speaking of which, I have now had multiple Swiss foods including Biberli, Leckerli, Luxemburgerli, and Apfeltaschen. They're a bit hard to explain, so I'll save that for another post... but all you need to know right now is that they're delicious. :)

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