Wow! It has been a really really really long time since I did a blog last. I'll try and keep it brief (but I say that everytime and fail epicly everytime... so- No promises!).
Week before intro camp:
The week before intro camp, I stayed with a temporary host family that lived just a few houses away. My host parents went to Greenlang on vacation, so I got to spend a week with the sweetest family in all of Denmark! The family I stayed with has kids (I was probably too excited about this- but oh well!). They have a daughter who goes to school with me and a 14 year old son (same age as my brother, Grant, back home- but way less annoying!). The mom spoke no english, which was hard at times, but helped me learn danish and always worked out since everyone else knows english. The family was amazingly sweet to me and I loved every minute of my week there! The day before I left for intro camp, a Rotarian in my club, Hanne, took me to a Medieval festival in a nearby town (Horsens). It was amazing! I ate some really good food (that's how you know I am an exchange student- every place I go is judged by the food!), spent some time with her family, and just had fun.
On that Sunday, I was picked up by my club counselor and driven to my week long intro camp! For everyone reading this who has no clue what intro camp is, it's basically where the country puts on a language/culture crash course for the inbound exchange students! I got to meet all of the summer students and we spent the week getting to know eachother. I made so many friends (and became very good friends with my roommate- Kelsea from Washington state!). We did so many fun things, so I'll just rattle off the best: private concert with an amazing Danish band, spending the day in the 3rd largest city in Denmark- Aarhus where we visited an amazing art museum- ARoS, watching the danish film "In a Better World" (which won an Academy Award in the USA last year!). We also spent 6 hrs a day learning Danish- insanely hard, boring, fun, awesome, and everything all at the same time! I had a blast at intro camp and now I am even more excited to meet with the other exchange students soon!
This past Sunday, my district held a get-together for the inbounds in my district. We hiked 6 km (almost all uphill, and one part of that was climbing the tallest hill in Denmark, which everyone says is jokingly small, but when you are climbing it, it doesn't feel that small- even though it's only 170.86 m tall!) We also canoed 5-6 km. I think it's safe to say that I have finally worked off all of the Kjeldsons cookies I got for my birthday! I also got the chance to meet some oldies (exchange students from Australia, New Zealand, and a few from S. American countries come during January so they have been here longer and are called oldies, and once they leave, I become an oldie to the newbies that will come).
I was going back and forth on whether I should write about this, but it was something very important to me, and something that many people reading this would never understand if I don't write it. Yesterday was the 10 year anniversary of the 9/11 tragedy. I knew that day would be hard on me, but I didn't know how hard. Although the attacks changed the entire world, no one felt it like Americans. It was very odd not being in America on that day. Everyone here constantly asked me how I felt about it and kept asking me questions. I suppose it was because they wanted an American's view, but it seemed odd. Of course I was upset, and of course it affected me- what else do they expect! I guess it was weird going from America where people don't ask that question (because everyone knows how you feel- and they feel it too) and then arriving here where I kept getting asked about it. There is no way to explain what it felt like to me on the day the attacks occured, and I have never had to explain it until now. There is also no way to explain how it felt living through the 10 year mark in Denmark. It felt weird, spending a day where Americans come together, out of America. I did realize that the whole world truly does feel affected by it, but I also realized how much more it affecting America. I guess now I am just babbling on and making no sense, so I will stop, but I just thought that 9/11 needed to be mentioned, because it was very significant to me and showed me a lot about the world.
Other than that:
I might be taking a 60 km biking trip later this month. I would go with other teens into a nearby town (Silkeborg) and back, it would be a weekend trip. My blazer is now full of pins! After all of my rotary events, my blazer is completely full (and I have almost no pins left- I will need to make more!). My language is coming on a little bit better. I can now understand a lot more, but finding the words to talk is still tough. Tomorrow, I will be tested at my language class to move into the next class level (I hope I pass!!!!). Denmark is tough at times and I finally realize how much I love Florida, but I love it here! The language is hard, but so rewarding when you learn something! I am starting to feel like I fit in, but I still know I have a long way to go.
Knus fra Danmark!