Well. Today, was one of the most fun days I have had here! Do you know where we went? Do you know what we did? The answer is that I really didn’t do anything. I just hung out with my host family and it was absolutely hilarious. Let me rewind. The day started off with me at school. After all, that is “why I am here.” Today, I only had one 90 minute class (8:00-9:30) of teaching 7th graders. It was so interesting and I got to work with a new group of students. This group was a bit more timid to talk English to me. Well, the lesson somehow got switched to learning bones in English…All I have to say is thank you Ms. Wise for high school anatomy and thank you random memory recall brain for allowing me to remember some terms. They found it so amusing that we call our “little finger” a pinky. They probably laughed about that for 10 minutes. Afterwards, five of us were done and decided to walk into town to try to find a snack and figure out how to turn on our prepaid German phones…no luck. However, I did successfully buy the best chocolate bar I have ever had using the little amount of German I know. SUCCESS! Usually, I will try so hard to communicate and the person will laugh and smile and answer me in English…while I appreciate this and accept the kindness, I want to not automatically come off as an American. Today was the first time anyone took me serious! Yes! After a little bit of town hopping and snacking, we got to meet the mayor. It was so nice and he was very welcoming. He gave us booklets, pins, lanyards, and other goodies to officially welcome us into the town. We even got our picture made and it will be in the newspapers tomorrow. I am going to enjoy my Lizzie McGuire goes to Italy moment and pretend that he doesn’t do this with every group of Americans that come into Werne. I am going to try to steal a copy of the newspaper tomorrow. After meeting the mayor I went home to another nice fresh home cooked meal. I don’t know if I am more hungry because I am biking and walking everywhere plus going up and down four flights of stairs or if it is because I eat more often, but I eat so much every day. My belly was full and I was happy and my friend Jessica came over for our “playdate.” Her host family is going through a death and needed to be alone so we decided to entertain her and man did we do that. I am proud to say that I am the official loser of about 20 consecutive Just Dance games. I like to look at that as a honor and not something to be sad at. I tried and tried and even had to change into “workout” clothes, but it looks like I was in the back of high school cheerleading routines for a reason. After a pity win from Lotti, we had another nice dinner of bread and cheese. I could eat that every day. Mom, we are going to eat more European when I come back home and this dinner of bread and cheese and butter and grapes is going to be a common one. Okay? Dinner was filled with so much laughter and singing random songs at random times and tears from embarrassing stories. Apparently, I am hilarious. And my “sisters” are some of the most entertaining people I have ever been around. I feel that I lucked out the most with the placement of my host family. I count down the days at school until I come home to hang out with them again. Even though there is a four, seven, and ten year gap between us, we have become such good friends. I don’t even feel like I am old when I am with them, I just feel like one of the gang.
I have also noticed that their are many differences between America and German:
-Everything here has a button type switch instead of a flipping one. Wanna open the window…button. Wanna flush the toilet…button. Wanna turn on the light…button.
-The beds don’t have sheets. The bed contain a bed skirt and the one sheet everyone dreads to put on after doing the laundry, but that is it besides the comforter. The comforter is made up of feathers and is so thick and I want to sink into it every single night. I am ordering one when I get back to the states.
-If it is cold outside, they put food outside instead of taking room in the fridge. For example, we made fruit salad, and put it outside to stay cold instead of back into the fridge. As a side note… Everything really stays out. We have a whole table in the kitchen that just has all kinds of foods. Butter, bread, fruits, vegetables, candies, cakes, cookies…everything just stays out. No covering or anything.
-Nothing really comes in plastic bottles. Here, everything is made of glass. Coke bottles, apple juice, water, orange juice…everything. Everyone is also very concerned about energy here. When showering, they wet their bodies and hair. Turn the water off. Scrub and wash. Turn the water on. Rinse. Turn it off. Scrub…and so forth. Also, everything is recycled! It is so nice.
-Last for the night. Everyone is so so so so so so so TALL in Germany. I am not even kidding… I am an average height at home being about 5’6. My host sister is 15, and she is average height for her age…SHE IS SIX FOOT TALL….She is AVERAGE!! My host father thinks that since they eat more healthy food and less artificial flavors and healthier diets and lifestyles, that they just grow more… My host mother has to be about 6’3 and I met a 20 year old boy the other day that was probably 6’9… I mean my 12 year old sister is taller than I am and she is “short” for her age…. I have never felt so small! I like it but I don’t… So Sara if you are reading this… you would be the shortest person I have ever seen and Lauren if you are reading this…You would love it and find so many people that are taller than you!!!
After all that is said and done.. I love it here and am having a hard time deciding why I should go back. Ha Ha… Danke schön (thank you very much) [pronouced–“don kay schwoon –spoon but shw instead of sp–“] for all of those who take the time to read my little blog. It is a fun way for me to keep in touch and to make memories of the best experience I have had.
Because I have not posted a single picture with me in it… here is one at the mayors office. In this picture you will see:
Back row: Anna, Kathryn, myself, Mr. Mayor, Kelsey, Principal of our school, Heike (the best mentor out of everyone who does international student teaching), and Lady who works in mayors office… (I have no idea actually..)
Front Row: Johni, Jordan, Jessica, Jennifer