Email from Spencer McGregor -club outbound Exchange student in Sweden

 

Hej,

 

It's getting quite dark now, and a lot colder! I have the week off school for a fall break which is very nice.

 

 

I stayed with my Rotary councillor for a week while my parents were on vacation. That was very fun. We went to their summer cabin and I picked mushrooms for the first time. They had 3 younger kids, so that was an interesting change. At the end of the week I stayed with my aunt. She has a horse at a nearby stable so I got to ride that twice, which was very fun. I also got to pick mushrooms there, and got a huge bag full. However, they took almost 2 hours to clean! I go to the Rotary meetings every 2 weeks; and last Saturday was the 2350 conference. The exchange students had a table with some information on youth exchange and we answered any questions the Rotarians had. There were also some speakers which we watched. At the end the exchange students did a skit about our experiences in Sweden. That went well and was quite funny. Unfortunately I missed presenting because it was my mormors 90th birthday. On December 8th the exchange students will meet again and go to an opera. Then, on the 13th of December I was invited to join for a celebration of Lucia.

 

My host family is still very good. I will only be staying with them for the year. They do many interesting things and are very accomodating. At the start of this week an exchange students from the south of Sweden was able to stay with us for 2 days. He had a very good time and I got to show him around Stockholm.

 

I haven't had anything to overcome so far. Everything has been awesome.

 

The language is still going well. At the DC they were impressed with our progress. There is an informal test the next time we meet on the 8th, but I think I'll do fine.

 

My social life is good. My class at school is very friendly, which made it easy to get to know everyone. Also, the exchange students are an amazing group of people, we usually arrange to meet in Stockholm for fika every week or 2.

 

School is great. The class really makes it fun. And the free lunches never get old! We do many interesting things. I am glad I don't have to take the tests though; I think it would be too much pressure to learn the language and at the same time try to get good grades. After the break there will be a school-wide "Hunger Games". We pay 10 crowns to play, then we get a name of our victim. You have to be 5 metres away then yell "Kill!" and hug them. Once you get them you get their victim name. And that continues until there is only 1 person left. The last person gets all the money, over 1000$! Even if I don't win it will be very fun to see how it works out.

 

I still love everything about Sverige! As I said, there have been no problems at all. Just amazing experiences!

 

I'm looking foward to it snowing! My family will set me up with a pair of cross-country skis and there are many trails around where I live to ski on. Also, I can skate around the island once it gets cold enough. Downhill skiing will also be fun, I think I will get to go at least a couple times this winter. It will also be interesting to see how dark it gets. Even now the sunrise is 7 and sunset 16! The winter will be a great time to live in Sverige.

 

There may be some homesickness around the holidays. There have been occasional pangs already. However, I have such a great home and do so many interesting things that I will be too occupied for it to become worse. I have already noticed that the key is to get out and do things, then it really feels like you're making the most of your year abroad. No use to worry when you can't change things, might as well enjoy everything that happens.

 

I have limited contact with family and friends from the start. It's no idea to spend my time sitting on the computer on skype or facebook all the time. Better to adjust to Sverige from the start and keep it that way until I have to go home. Anyways, I've noticed that contact doesn't help with homesickness, and can make it worse.

 

 

Jägarsitgen 69

s18146 Lidingö

 

Med vänlig hälsning

 

Spencer McGregor