Saturday, January 30, 2010

Half way

Since I haven’t been blogging lately I will try to recollect of the things that have been going on in my life lately. So I have switched host families and my situation is kinda of unheard of in the exchange world, but it has been done before! I am staying with a single mom and her Noa and another exchanger from Boston. It’s been fun so far because Carolyn (other exchanger) and I really get along. I have been here for four weeks now and it’s been a blast. I really love my new host mom, Karmela and her son Noa, who is four. Carolyn and I basically switch on and off from playing with Noa, doing household chores and taking showers. Haha. Anyway, we have started a new tradition of making American dishes on sundays and inviting our other exchange friend from Brazil, Victor, to come eat with us. It’s been great with this new tradition and tomorrow I think we are making Chicken Pot Pie. WOO. Never had it before so hope it’s good! There are always local hockey games on Sunday and hopefully we will go more often because the tickets are cheap!

Literally every other day it snows here and it’s got to stop! I am kind of not surprised about the snow now and just want it to go away! It is pretty though. In the beginning of January, Carolyn, Blair and I went to the Snow Queen competition on MT. Sljeme and attempted to watch the ski competition. That plan failed ending up in being laughed at by most of the people on the mountain because we americans couldn’t handle the snow and the freezing weather. I bet I tripped like a million times and made a fool of myself but it was a lot of fun just laughing at ourselves and being laughed….I am guessing we were the only tourists on that mountain.

I recently went to Slovenia to go shopping! WOO. I went to H&M and was sooo happy. That's basically what consisted of my Slovenian road trip…oh! and I ate Mexican food! (Slavic Mexican food). It was interesting and satisfying enough to fill my cravings of Mexicana comida.

As a Rotary group we all went to Salzburg for a district conference with the Austrian exchangers! That was loads of fun and it was great meeting other exchangers. So now I have visited Salzburg twice and loved it both times, except for the fact that each time I went there I got sick :( Going to the district conference really has gotten me excited for EURO TRIP! WOOO.

Last night was noć muzeja which happens once a year in Croatia. What happens is all the museums in Zagreb have free entrance from six to two in the morning. I went with some of my classmates to the new modern art museum, which was really cool to see again and a lot of fun! There was so many people out and about in Zagreb! The city was so live and it was really cool being out and visiting museums. I also went to Mimara, which is a historical museum with a lot of pottery and ancient plates and stuff like that. I didn’t get to go through the whole museum because we wanted to go see the fireworks in the main trg. Then I met up with some of my other exchange friends and walked through the Zagreb Museum which was really cool and I want to go back to actually visit the museum instead of walk through it.

Oh, I guess I never said anything about my holidays!  It was pretty interesting for Christmas and New Years and probably one of the best holiday seasons I have had. I went to the Christmas Eve mass with some of my friends and walked through the center.

So that’s about what’s been going on in my life recently. I have a great life here in Croatia and this experience has probably been the best experience of my life.

Thursday, November 26, 2009


marks the day of my three months being here. The day I arrived was August 26, 2009. wow. It seems like such a long time ago but three months is nothing. It’s a summer basically. I am being harder on myself with learning the language because everyone knows English here and I really really want to master Croatian. Or at least carry on a conversation in Croatian. I will, I know I will.

Thanksgiving marks my progress here in this amazing city. It’s surreal, really, that I am even here. I am living this dream. My dream. I don’t know how to explain it. Anyway, I am doing better at trying to be better at Croatian (does that make sense?) and I have friends and I love my life. I don’t want to go home. I am supposed to be here and it’s great.

I don’t know what else to say? Wish you guys were here to experience this so I didn’t have to find words to describe this crazy dream. Christmas is going to weird I feel and I desperately would like a Jewish Christmas with my exchange friends just to avoid the awkward Christmas celebration with my host family.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Studenog 2009

It’s my sister’s birthday today! And she is 13! HOW SPECIAL.

and I am in Croatia. November has been a good month. Lots of laughs, lots of fun and lots of being comfortable where I am now. It might have taken some time to get fully adjusted to my new where abouts but it has finally happened. And I have also come to the conclusion that there will be set backs but you will always get up and brush off and move on with your life.

So learning Croatian is getting a little bit easier now that we have moved on from learning the genitive, locative and the accusative of nouns…yippy. THOSE WERE FUN! Anyway, we are now learning verbs…verbs verbs…are my favorite because we are learning to conjugate them!! And now I am thankful that I took three years of Spanish because it taught be about all the wonderful verb tenses and conjugation! Let’s see what I can come up with:

Ja volim spavati puno. I like to sleep a lot.

Ja jedim dobro hvana. I eat a lot of good food.

Ti si čitaš moj blog. You are reading my blog.

Ja sam Amerikanka. Take a wild guess.

So this might not show you the best results of my process in Croatian but at least I am getting somewhere.

So Zagreb has already decided that Christmas can’t come soon enough so they have put up LIGHTS everywhere. But they are not lit. BOOO. There is only about 40 days till Christmas now….ahhhhh.

so I don’t know what else to tell you, email me, facebook me or something! IDK.

TO SUM THINGS UP! I love my life here, I love all my wonderful friends here and I never want to go back to America!

Good luck to those who are applying for exchange next year!

Saturday, October 17, 2009


It’s the middle of October and I can’t believe that it’s almost over. I have been here for two months and a half and really can’t believe that. It seems like yesterday that I boarded the plane and was hoping that the next three months would speed up because I was homesick and lonely. But now that I have somewhat of a life I am very happy to be here and am so blessed to have this experience. I think I am picking up more Croatian by the days and I really enjoy trying to learn it. Even though I have been told we exchange students are not expected to fully understand I desperately want to come back home and speak Croatian to my family to prove to them I actually learned something! Looking back on the past two months I know I went through some trials of my faith and as a person for sure. And now when I do look back I feel that I have grown so much stronger from experiencing all that I have here. I also feel like I know  myself and who I am know a lot better than I did when I was back in America.

So some things have changed since I last posted my blog like my school and travel opportunities. Okay, so about two weeks ago I asked the head rotary lady and my rotary counselor if it would be possible to switch schools where I would be doing something rather than nothing because I started to feel like I wasn’t learning anything or that there was no reason for me to be at a school where the teachers ingore me and I just sit there and do nothing. Yes, believe I tried to teach myself something in Croatian and do translations. I even bought a Croatian magazine and started to translate that but my attention span lasted for about fifteen minutes. So I thought I would ask because if you never ask you never know what the possibilities are. The next day, I got a “no” from the head lady and when I went to school that day, I realized I could make the best out of my situation and came to the conclusion that this is the way it’s meant to be and I can’t change it so let’s move on. I was ok with it. So the next week I find out that my rotary club is making all these plans to move me to a different school. I was in total shock and told my host parents repeatedly that I was fine where I was and that it’s ok, that they didn’t need to do this for me. But the night that I was told that it was in progress I went to Croatian class where my friend Paulo told me that someone from America from Gym. 18 was coming to his class. So basically the decision was already made without me in the process! Basically there was a lot of miscommunication between me, my host parents and my rotary club. And after finding out all that they had done for me I was very grateful and happy that I could change schools but I know the head lady from RYE is not happy with the changing of schools because there are four of us exchange students in one class. I completely understand that she doesn’t want us to buddy up and only talk with each other and since I have been to my school I have tried really hard to talk with the Croatian students and make friends. And I really my school now. I have five classes in English and it feels like a real high school instead of my other one. I was so happy to actually feel like a part of the class in my new school. so that’s the story with school.

Since I have switched schools I am not going on the trip to Austria to Bratislava with Gym 18 students and the RYE district conference is not this weekend anymore it’s going to be in December soooo no traveling for me this month.

Other than that, that’s what new in my life. I am really looking forward to craving pumpkins with my host family soon because Halloween is my favorite holiday.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

things are looking a little more like home

Rujan is officially completed and done with and I am so happy about that fact. Usually, I hate the fact that time slips away from you and you can’t believe that it has gone by that fast. But today I am especially happy that Rujan and gone and over with because that was possibly the hardest, just adjusting month of my life. I feel like I have changed a lot from just that one month and I am completely out of the funk that I was in. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t think about home, I do, but I would much rather be here.

I was just thinking about (I have a lot of time to think) how I have grown to like my new surroundings and how it’s not weird to me anymore. When I first came here, I thought that the calendars were really weird and the showers…ohh those darn showers!…I am still forcing myself not think about how it is back home with the showers! ha-ha. Anyway, my new host home is lovely, and I don’t feel weird about being here anymore. I really thought that feeling of uncomfortableness would stay with me but luckily it hasn’t.

School is going by faster these days with my new coloring book and thankfully my classmates have started to label things for me and even started to quiz me…which I don’t like but I will eventually start to memorize. There are a lot of things to look forward to this month. Starting this Saturday, I am going to the zoo in Zagreb (OMG!) I am super excited because my friend Nora got to go last week with her class and now me and my friend Sierra are going with her host parents. I don’t think I’ve been to a zoo since I was in middle school and now it’s even more exciting because I am going to a foreign country’s zoo! Last night I was so excited about going to the zoo, I started to make flashcards with animals names on them!

Then on the 17-19 of Listopad (October) there is a Rotary District Conference in Salzburg! I am sooo excited for that because we get to meet everyone in the eastern European countries! And I get to miss school! YIPPY. Then the next weekend (24-25 of October) I am going to Austria AGAIN with my class to Bratislava and Bec. We are going on the biggest river in Europe, exciting, and just doing some site seeing!

Croatian classes are going ok, I guess. I feel like I try really hard to understand the grammar and what the teacher is talking about but sometimes I just want to speak Spanish because that’s what I know! I am going to get my Croatian book today hopefully so then I can really start to study the language.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

One Month Complete

I can’t believe it’s been a full month since I have been here yet at the same time it feels so long but so short! I was thinking today how I haven’t grasped the whole Croatian culture yet and how if I did a short term exchange I wouldn’t have gotten as much out of it as I wanted to. And I think I am out of the funk that I have been in for awhile now and I am adjusting better.

School is soo boring. I don’t do anything so I have a lot of time to think about everything basically. So I have been writing notes to random people that I think of like my friend who is living in France right now and I even write notes to myself. It’s entertaining for about five minutes.

Two weekends ago I went to Pliticika Lakes with Rotary and is was the most beautiful thing I have ever seen. And it was a lot of fun too! All of us rotary kids were saying how it was like a fairytale or something and we were just waiting for the mermaids to pop up and sing to us.

I have recently lost a lot of weight being here from walking and eating a lot healthier so I really need some better looking clothes. Plus I am totally American here and I desperately want to look Euro.

I don’t know what else to say about this month…that it was crazy? naww..that is was interesting? YES. Best word to describe it.

Monday, September 7, 2009


So today was the first day of school and it was amazing! I met so many nice people and all my classmates are awesome! They all are friends it seems and they are very accepting! I am so so happy because I really thought that I wouldn’t be talking to anyone on the first day much. School it self was boring…all the teachers speaking in Croatian…so I couldn’t understand much. And they had a lot of breaks between classes! And everyone smokes or at least 80% do and it’s kinda weird to get used to.

But after school was great to because we all hung out at a bar where I guess everybody from our school does also. So we had our own little group and some people mingled with others…it was different from what I am used to but I am so happy that they asked me to come! But now I have a name to live up to because they had a girl from FL as an exchange student and they loved her! And hopefully they will love me! So the school year has started off great and I can’t wait to see what the rest of school year is like.