Erfahrungsbericht USA: Renée 2017-2018

Minnesota – the land of 10.000 lakes and bugs 

If someone would have told me that I would love to live in a small town, I think I would laugh about this super funny joke. But actually it’s not a joke. I thought small cities like Windom would be suuuuuper boring and the people wouldn’t be like the big city people but they’re just like we are... except they all life on a farm ;). 

Two years ago I decided for myself to do an exchange year with Open Door International and I will never regret it. I always thought that people who did an exchange year would lie about how life changing it is but it’s true. You make new friends and get a new family with other thoughts about life and how to see the world. And you start thinking about your life and how you lived. It’s totally changing in a positive way. But let’s talk about my trip, not life changing things :). 

My journey started on January 13th at the Cologne airport. It was early and all my friends were there to say goodbye to their crazy city girl. It was overwhelming and my eyes were bold because of all the tears we cried. But it wasn’t a sad moment actually. I was so happy to start a new chapter in my book called life. 

So I went into the airplane and started my 24 hours trip to the middle of nowhere called Windom. 

My journey ended in the beautiful airport of Sioux Falls where the most heartwarming and loveliest host family waited for me. At this point I felt like a family member. I had three host sisters, a mom and a dad and my new friend Fudgie, our dog. The dog didn’t really like me from day one but after a while she actually accepted me to the family. 

My first days I school were really interesting and exciting. School in America is so much easier and more relaxed than in Germany. You have more choices for your schedule and your extracurricular activities. I had classes like creative photography and Anatomy which were my favorites. Of course I had English, math and history but these were the only ones you had to take. My extracurricular activities were speech and track and field coach. Speech helps you to improve your self-confidence and your ability to talk in front of a class. You speak in front of people that you don’t know in different categories. Discussion, creative speaking, or original oratory are some of them. If you’re good, you’ll get a ribbon or a medal. That’s actually really amazing if you get one. The feeling to be better than a person who lives there and probably does speech longer than you do is so cool and you will never forget it. That’s what I liked about speech so much.

After a long winter with a lot of snow I helped the track and field team out. It was a lot of fun to hang out with the throwing team and go with them to meets all over Minnesota. To support and coach them helped me to find new friends and get more sporty ;). Extracurricular activities in America are just so much fun and I can recommend everyone to do at least two while they're in the US. There you will find your friends and it's the only opportunity to spend time with your friends. 

My family and I had a lot of beautiful and unforgettable memories like visiting Mount Rushmore and Minneapolis. But my favorite trip was to a German restaurant in the middle of nowhere. I felt like home. I mean, they had German bread! So how can you not be happy? :). Also a really fun trip was to the city of New Ulm where we visited a German brewery called Schell’s and visiting to thermal version of Herman the German (Herrmanns Statue). 

So folks, that was my trip to the middle of nowhere with a thousand of beautiful memories that I will never forget. I can recommend to everyone who has the chance to live the American way of life to actually do it! It will change you and the way you see America and other people. I always think about my trip and I wish I could turn back time. 

So thanks for taking time to read this :)


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