Sunday, February 28, 2010

change of pace

I'm not even close to being ready to leave and already I feel as though my life is changing. I am switching around my schedule to accomodate my German education and to get a jump start on the language. I have come to the conclusion that what I am doing is absolutely insane but completely necessary. I am the chick who gets all A's and takes the hard classes. I'm not usually described as "unpredictable", yet here I am getting ready to live in Germany for a year. I took a little detour from the norm with that decision... I needed a change. I'm not built to live in Fremont, Michigan and go to a high school with a mere TWO foreign language options. I won't let my schooling get in the way of my education. I am done with American high school. I am going on to something so much bigger. Needless to say, my life is a wee bit busy these days. I am trying to balance everything at once. School, theatre, friends, family, trips, etc. I'm not letting anything pass me by while I'm still here. I have come to appreciate the friends that I have, some who say that they're going to tie me to a tree come July and others who are completely on board with me being me. However, when it come to helping me learn German, I think I'm on my own. They simply raise their eyebrows and give me a "Good Luck" as they flip through the German dictionary, sounding out the words. Good luck, indeed. Until next time. Auf Wiedersehen-- sjinternational

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

i didn't think it could show up in photographs

This is the infamous Wheel of Torture I have been complaining about. Doesn't look like much, does it? Just wait until it spins your future around and around. You'd change your mind, too.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

the wheel of torture

Welcome back! It seems like a lifetime since I started this journey with Rotary, but I have finally come to the official starting point. Our weekend in Canada started with a mind-numbingly long bus ride to Sault (which is pronounced Sue; they just messed up the spelling) Ste. Marie, Ontario. It was exciting to be in Canada, eh? The Winter Olympics in Vancouver were commencing in the same country which made us all feel extremely cool. After a multi-cultural dinner served by the Sault College Culinary and Hospitality programs, we gathered to learn our country assignments. As calm as I may seem now, such was NOT the case as I sat wringing my hands and shaking in my chair. Gather in a room with a bunch of anxious teenagers and you will get an award from me. I don't know how our coordinators handled the stressed hormones. Kudos. The first thing we all noticed was a wheel with flags on it. The wheel was spun and it landed on India. After some teasing, a girl was selected. This may sound fun, but it was Wheel of Fortune from hell. It was like Vanna White flaunting our lives in front of us. Not cool. The variety of countries was not very large and I knew my country was up there. My turn had to come some time. People got Germany, Taiwan, Lithuania, Thailand, Brazil and others. People kept going up and getting their countries as I sat. Well, "sat" is a vague description as I bounced up and down, my mind a tornado of thoughts. Then I heard my name. The wheel had been spun. It landed on Germany. I got up in a daze, no reaction on my face, but my heart raced. After calling my mom, of course, and texting my best friend, Meagan, I took my seat again. From this point on I was able to relax and watch others go through their torment. I almost felt bad. There are now 7 people going to Taiwan, 6 people headed Brazil, and 5 of us are taking over Germany. I am going to live and study in Germany. That's in Europe for those who need a map. Germany was the fourth country on my preference list, behind Spain, Argentina, and Austria. I am excited about my assignment. I am now beginning my education in German, a language that I have never been remotely interested in, which may come back to bite me in the butt since I am going to live in Germany. No matter, I will conquer the lugi hawking while speaking. With the anxiety now gone, the real work begins. Learning German will be my goal for the next two years. Our next conference is in April, back at the Kettunen Center in Cadillac Michigan. Next time we all congregate, hopefully the nerves will have receded a bit. Doubt it, though. Auf Wiedersehen!--sjinternational