Monday, 2 January 2012

2012 Long update :)

Hey everyone, I would just like to start off with apologizing for not updating my blog recently, i tired to upload a video and that didn't work. After that I was quite busy as what will be explained below.

From the 4th till the 7th of November, my first host parents took me too Paris. The 3 days were typical fall weather in france, gray cloudy skies, we were lucky that it didn't rain when we were there. The first night there we ate le train bleu, it is a restaurant in la gare de lyon. Like most buildings in france, it is old, in Paris it is classified as a historic monument and literally nothing can be touched without authorization. Then next day my host dad had to go to a conference (he is an orthodontist and that is the main reason why we were in Paris). Anyways, the next day my host mom showed me paris, not in a tourist fashion, where you get on the bus and the guide speaks english and points out each site herding the group to each monument like sheep. Instead we did things Parisian style, by bike. Yes folks, I was shown Paris by a true frenchie in a mix of english and french. I thought it was pretty cool. And just so everyone is clear, we didn't bring our own bikes, in Paris there are these cool little machines posted all around the city where you can borrow a bike for the day (or how ever long you want it for) bike around and park it in a different machine, and grab the bike later on with the code that it gives you. Which i think is pretty cool. So by bike we went to all the big monument in Paris, La louvre, Eiffel tower, la bastille, Notre Dame, arc de triomphe, sacré coeur, and monmartre. All of these sites were amazing and it was cool to think of how old some of these monuments were. So over all my stay in Paris was a really exciting experience.

School has been going well so far, yes its impossible to do the class work but i am able to follow along sometimes about what is happening in class. My french abilities have much improved since I've arrived, but there is still a long way to go to consider myself fluent.

I guess it would now be about a week since christmas and that was one of the hardest times I've found on my exchange. Since i was born i spent every christmas with my family, thats just how it was. I didn't felt like i missed home, but i knew i did. I also found the way the French celebrate christmas to be really different. For their christmas there big celebration is on the 24th night to the morning of the 25th. For my christmas we went over to a close family friends house and ate with everyone. I think everyone could see that this christmas was difficult for me to not be with my family. I also didn't really have the feeling that it was christmas. The only decorations where on the main street, and there was no snow, it was just so different that i didn't feel anything.

Tuesday the 27th is the day i switched families. I am very happy here. Both my host parents are happy to teach me french and my host sister is nice, happy to teach me as well, and is also in my class in school. So far i am settling in very well and i will be spending the next 3 months here. The hardest part is when i had to pack up. Trying to gather all of my things was so difficult because just things I've randomly accumulated over the past 4 months wasn't thought about till it was time to pack the suite case. Im not sure how ill manage to get back to Canada...

From the 30th to the 1st i spent the new years at my friend Jennifer's house (the american). I spent the new years with her new host family, and her host brother is also my friend (he was an exchange student who just came back from Japan). On the 31st we drove over to Luxembourg (20 minute drive) to buy a few things since everything is cheeper over there. Jordan bought gas for the car and Jennifer and i bought some chocolate. On the night of the 31st it wasn't quite as big of a night as in Canada and you US. When i say this i mean in whats on t.v, for us we just watched the acts on t.v, everyone in the crowd was dressed up in their fancy clothing and sitting in a nicely decorated room. There was still the count down, well it was mostly just Jennifer, Jordan and i jumping up and down counting down till the new year. It was cool to think that for 8 hours i was a year ahead of my family and friends back home.

This is my last day of holidays, but likely for me, my next set of holidays are in just over a month for another 2 weeks. For 7 days out of my next vacation i will be taking a bus trip. I will start off in Paris and then by bus we will make our way down to Barcelona. Im really excited for this trip, its so cool how europe is so close together that it takes no time at all to be in another country and to see different sites. When i went to Germany, the thing i found to be cool is that you are in france and all you here is french, but then as soon as we crossed the border it was German. There was no mix of french and German it was just a start and stop. Its really cool and something I'm 100% not use to.

Over all the past four months that I've been here have been really good. I have no complaints and no regrets on coming on this trip. Yes I've faced my problems with homesickness and just the other little things. For me its crazy to think that i only have about 6 months left. For my parents i think they are counting down the days till i will be getting home. For me the last month before i left took literally FOREVER to come, for my parents it all happened in the blink of an eye. When i will be returning sometime in mid July, the rolls will be reversed, my last month will go by in a flash and to my parents a day will seem like a week. There is still 6 months left till i have to start to pack to come home, which I'm not sure how that is going to happen given my past history with how much luggage I've accumulated here.

Talk to you soon...i hope
I hope everyone had a good new year and christmas


Saturday, 24 September 2011

Sept 24th 2011

So from right when I got off the plane its been a non stop adventure, its been so busy I forgot to write on my blog. Anyways, right when after my long flight I arrived in Luxembourg at 10:05 Am on the 24th of August. I was welcomed by a big group of rotary members from my district! 3 other kids from Taiwan were there before me; after the arrival of 2 other students after me (one from the U.S. and the other from Bolivia) they took us to the camp. Once everyone arrived I made friends with the other Canadian, Kaitlyn (she is from Ontario), 2 from the states, Jennifer and Dane (Dane is actually Canadian but lives in the states), and Roger who is from Bolivia. Later on during the camp we added a girl named Emilie to the group of our new close group of friends. During the camp we went sailing, mini golfing, biking, swimming, and learned a little bit of French. It was fun and I really enjoyed myself!

On the 5th of September was my first day of school, on my first day it was really confusing and I was really confused, but I still had a good day. Ive made a good group of friends! One day my class mates signed me up for me to play on the class team in the school competition and they told me the day before. They wanted to sign me up because we played in sport class and they think I'm good :P. The girls in France are a lot less athletic that in Canada, but are so petit, i feel really tall here. Anyways yesterday me and 2 of my friends were watching a sport class play handball outside in the courtyard and we were laughing cause the girls were really bad and could neither catch nor throw the ball. 

I feel like my French has really improved since I first got here, its really cool feeling. One day it feels like I know nothing and then the next I know a ton its weird cause I learn so much in a day.  

Today I'm going to watch a Rugby game with some of the girls that go to my school that live in Vittel. I forgot to mention that I take the train to and from school everyday and it takes about 20 minutes each way, there are only 600 kids in my school. 

Next week I will be away to the Vogue mountains for a meeting with the kids in my district, I'm really excited to see everyone again! 

I think the thing I miss the most is the Canadian food, I also miss being surrounded by different cultures. In France its just french people (no duh) but I miss eating Indian food, or Italian, or what not! 

a bientôt 

Friday, 5 August 2011

Oh my goodness its August

The past few weeks/weeks to come, are going to be by far the busiest I've been in a long time. There are, however, aa few more loose ends that I have to tie together, such as: getting my money visa, getting cash euro's, some shopping, and of course finish off my good-bye. I swear I am the worst person for saying good-byes, so I guess you could say I'm an expert at hellos. When I was little and my parents took me to the park, they had a difficult time getting me out of the park, annd no matter the kid, I would go up and introduce myself. I guess you could say the song 'hello, goodbye' by the beatles could relate to me in the lyrics, "I don;t know why you say goodbye I say hello."

My last day at work is on the 16th of this month, which I guess you could say I am excited for. I work at Canadian Tire, and have been working there for over 2 years as a cashier. At work the managers are very excited for me, they all say it will a good experiance for me, and I couldn't agree more with them. I would say I am blessed with stumbling across this opprotunity, one of my goals in life was to be fluent in more than just english. In order to fufill that goal i decided to take Spanish, so far I have completed my grade 10 and 11 year. I'm telling you thing because I often mix up my French and Spanish, so if later on I talk about saying something in Spanish instead of in French it won't just be out of the blue.

I'm still talking with my first host family and I am very excited to meet them, as they tell me they are to meet me.

Only 18 more days,

à bientôt


Tuesday, 12 July 2011


Each day is getting closer to my departure and at times I honestly can't wait and it takes an effort to keep myself composed, but in the end the wait will be worth it. To my surprise there are really 3 main consers I'll have for my exchange. 1. Leaving everyone behind, and missing them to a great extent when I'm gone developing an erge to want to go back home. 2. learning French when I am there and trying to really get an understanding for the language. and 3. Making friends. I would I have a more out going personality, I guess it's just being judged by my new piers which is my biggest concern but i guess i will have to find a way to get over that.

à bientôt


Monday, 11 July 2011

Packing Woot

So basically it's a month and a half ish till I leave. Last week I was on vacation in the shuswaps, during this time I read the book, Touch the Dragon by Karen Conelly (I think thats her last name). Anyways, I loved the book, and it connected greatly with me, since she was also a rotary exchange student. The book is just basically her diary of her time in Thialand; so as an insperation i guess from the book, I'm going structure my blog like my diary, well i guess it will be my online "diary", word for word of what I write in the one my grandpa and grandma bought me for my birthday.

Although I do have a short amount of time and a crap load of stuff I need to get done, it hasn't reached the point of becoming chaotic. The biggest thing I have to worry about is what to pack, as many of the other outbound girls in my district are also fretting over. According to my flight itinerary I can only bring ONE suitcase, a weight was not listed just one suitcase was determined. My dad decided to give me the biggest suit case we own and really its massive, then again I do have a fair bit to pack not only with clothing and gifts for my host families, but as well as my soccer crap. Oh well at lest my parents can mail me stuff if it's needed. Time to play tetris and get this thing all sorted out, cause I still have a month and a half :).

P.S. i won't start typing up my diary till i leave on the 23rd

à bientôt


Tuesday, 28 June 2011

56 more days

It's going to be a crazy next couple of months, or 56 days. I'm leaving on the 23rd of august. I have so much  still am getting ready for. I've talked to my first host family and am really excited to get to meet them. As you may not know I am going to live in France for a year thanks to Rotary youth exchange. Many people ask me why I want to just leave for a year, and I can't really answer them with a direct knowledgeable answer. Really I would love to see the world, have ties and connections around the around the world, as well as to be fluent in the language. I think the main thing that each rotarian student will experiance is the change with in them self, it will be a chance to start over and be the person we really want to be or become. So as crazy as i am for doing this exchange, its going to change my life, and be one thing that helped make me who I am today.

à bientôt