Going on an exchange program to Canada wasn´t a difficult decision for me. To be honest, I was really looking forward to it even though I was kind of scared by the thought of living in a completely different part of the planet for a whole year. But I wasn´t really nervous until the moment I had to leave the plane and actually meet my host family. My host mother was already used to the whole exchange program business with all its different aspects and probably knew how I felt because she was very supportive when I arrived and always encouraged me to speak English.
A day I didn´t really look forward to was the first day at Moncton High School. I guess that every exchange student has different fears: Will I find new friends? Will my teachers be sympathetic if I don´t speak a lot? All kinds of questions went through my head that day, but my first day at school was actually not as bad as I had pictured it. Of course, I was really nervous for most of the day, but as soon as it was over I realized going to school in Canada wasn´t actually half as bad as I had imagined it to be.
From that day onwards everything just became better and easier. Naturally, life has its ups and downs and I had to change my host family once because they had some issues in their family which they didn´t wanted to “share” with me. However, my time in Canada was awesome. I had never had so much fun in my whole life. It was a totally different experience from what I was used to from Germany. First of all, the people in Canada accept the cards life deals them. Most of my friends didn´t have a master plan for their future lives, even though most of them were about 18 years old. The surprising fact was that this wasn’t seen as something negative. It made them more relaxed because they didn´t worry so much about what to do when they finish high school. I really enjoyed that way of life and it´s one of the things I miss most.
One other thing that is cool about Canada is its school system. As an exchange student, you can choose from an enormous amount of subjects, one better than the other. I, for example, took a class called “Outdoor pursuits”. In this subject you learn how to survive in the wilderness, build shelters, and how to cook various meals. It was definitely my favourite subject since it was something I had never done before.
In the end, I would like to give you one piece of advice: Anybody who´s planning on going on an exchange should try to make as many friends as possible from the first day on because your mates will be the people who will help you through your troubles and bad times. At the end of my exchange I noticed how much they meant to me and how much I would miss them. I´m going to meet up with some friends from Canada in February. I´m really looking forward to meeting them and I guess that I will also go back to Canada one day to visit my friends there.
Christoph Bohne 10b