Thursday, November 14, 2013

I knew Switzerland would be cold, but I didn't exactly prepare myself well for just how cold it will be. The temperature right now is colder than my American winter, and it will get even colder! On Wednesday, I was walking to the train station from my house in the morning to go to school, and it was -2 degrees Celsius. I couldn't feel my legs or my cheeks... It's the same when I walk home from school too, and I almost want to break out into a full on sprint so I get to the house, aka warmth, quicker. Hopefully, I'll get used to this cold weather. Otherwise, I don't know how I'll survive this winter!! I am so excited for when it starts snowing. My host sisters and my school friends can't believe me when I say that. They say I'll understand why after the long winter... The only place I'm ever warm is at home. At school, the teachers sometimes open the windows for fresh air. I ask myself, "do they even feel cold?" Today, I even resorted to wearing my winter coat in class.

This past week has been really wonderful. I cannot speak more positively or enthusiastically about studying abroad. I think it might be one of the best decisions I've made in my lifetime. Last Saturday, I started another German course with the exchange students in preparation for the B1 German Test; however, I would like to do the B2 Test at the end of my year. The teacher of our course said that she could help me with additional material to help me pass the B2 Test. If I pass this test, I will get a certificate proving that I am fluent in German. The highest test is C2, and with C1, one can teach German. I feel that the courses I have, the one with Rotary and my one in school will help me a lot with perfecting grammar, building vocabulary and so. I really want to achieve almost perfect German during my exchange-and of course, keep it.

After the course, I went to Bern with my counselor, Silvia, and her two sons Nick(16) and Remy(14). Once we were in Bern, we walked around and saw some of the city. I have to go again though because Bern is a very pretty city. We then had dinner in a restaurant, and then went to the Bundesplatz for the second annual light show. There were a ton of people in this giant courtyard out front of the capital building, and behind the people was a massive projector that displayed the lights. This show happens every night for about a month, until the end of November. The show was the history of Switzerland in fairytale version. I didn't understand anything because the script was Swiss German, but I did see the light show and that was very cool! I had a lovely time with Silvia and her family too.

Sunday, I went to Olten with Leandra for the Country Fair. That was a lot of fun! A lot of exchange students and returns came to represent their home/host country. In a ballroom, booths were set up all around the perimeter and each country decorated it with culture items from this place. There was even food involved... YUM. The atmosphere was incredible. All the kids from the different places were mingling among each other, some of the boys from Canada, Australia and New Zealand were tossing around a rugby ball, all the Latinos were dancing (no surprise there), and so on. This image from my exchange is one of my favorites. We exchange students have come from all over the world, met in Switzerland and it feels like we have known each other our entire lives.

School is always better, but not exactly making As in the classes... On the upside, I've noticed that the questions I had time to answer on the test, I answered correctly. This is good news because I'm starting to understand German better!!

Yesterday, I skyped with my mom at home and my host family together. That was great, and I had the best time translating-I do think I'll be fluent by Christmas. It put me in the best mood speaking with both of my mommies!

Sometimes my real mom tells me that I don't have to write always so happily in my blog, that I should be truthful if there are hard parts in my exchange. Of course I'd be honest if it came to that, but I'm truly happy. Always tired, but happy!

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