Donnerstag, 20. Dezember 2012


Exchange is change. Rapid, brutal, beautiful, hurtful, colorful, amazing,
unexpected, overwhelming and most of all constant change. Change in
lifestyle, country, language, friends, parents, houses, school, simply everything.

Exchange is learning to trust. Trust people, who, at first, are only names on a
piece of paper, trust that they want the best for you, that they care. Trust, that
you have the strength to endure a year on your own, endure a year of being
apart from everything that mattered to you before. Trust that you will have
friends. Trust that everything’s going to be alright. And it is seeing this trust
being justified.

Exchange is thinking. All the time. About everything. Thinking about those
strange costumes, the strange food, the strange language. About why you’re
here and not back home. About how it’s going to be like once you come back
home. How that boy is going to react when you see him again. About who’s
hanging out where this weekend. At first who’s inviting you at all. And in the
end where you’re supposed to go, when you’re invited to ten different things.
About how everybody at home is doing.

Exchange is people. Those incredibly strange people, who look at you like
you’re an alien. Those people who are too afraid to talk to you. And those
people who actually talk to you. Those people who know your name, even
though you have never met them. Those people, who tell you who to stay
away from. Those people who talk about you behind your back, those people
who make fun of your country. All those people, who aren’t worth your
giving a damn. Those people you ignore. And those people who invite you to
their homes. Who keep you sane. Who become your friends.

Exchange is great. It’s feeling the connection between you and your host
parents grow. It’s hearing your little host sister asking where her big sister is.
It’s meeting people from all over the world. It’s cooking food from your
home country and not messing up.

Exchange is exchange students. The most amazing people in the whole wide
world. Those people from everywhere who know exactly how you feel and
those people who become your friends even though you don’t see them that

Exchange is understanding.
Exchange is unbelievable.
Exchange is not a year in your life. It’s a life in one year.
Exchange is something you will never forget, something that will always be a
part of you. It is something no one back at home will ever truly understand.

Exchange is growing up, realizing that everybody is the same, no matter
where they’re from. That there is great people and douche bags everywhere.
And that it only depends on you how good or bad your day is going to be. Or
the whole year. And it is realizing that you can be on your own, that you are
an independent person. Finally. And it’s trying to explain that to your parents.

Exchange is everything. And exchange is something you can’t understand
unless you’ve been through it.

(Unknown author)

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