Juan Barona
2009-10 Outbound to Denmark

Hometown: Weston, Florida
School: Cypress Bay HS
Sponsor: Weston Rotary Club, District 6990, Florida
Host: Hjørring Vestre Rotary Club, District 1440, Denmark

Juan's Bio

Hej! My name is Juan Jose Barona. I am a senior at Cypress Bay high school and I am very excited to say that I will be an exchange student to Denmark!

I was born in February 29, 1992 (leap year) in Ecuador. I moved to the United States when I was 8 years old and I currently live in Weston, Florida which when compared to most other cities in Florida, is small. I live with my family of 5 which includes my sisters who were both exchange students to France and Italy. After realizing what a great effect this experience had on their lives, I could not pass on the opportunity which this program offers. I am very open minded to new people and places.

Unfortunately, most things are far from my city, but I always find something to do. I always like to keep myself busy because as far as I know I only have one life to live and I do not want to spend it watching television on the couch. Sports and friends are very important in my life. If I am not at school, I am swimming with my team at the YMCA in where I’m also a lifeguard. After work or swimming, I am at the gym working out with my friends. In the small amount of time that I spend at home most of the time I am either sleeping, eating (VERY important in my life) or playing guitar which brings me to music. I am always listening to my IPod whenever I have a minute. Whenever I don’t have anything to do, I watch movies or CNN which I find very interesting because I like to be informed of what is going on in the world which makes me appreciate the things I have in my life. In the future I would like to be an architect or a mechanical engineer.

I look forward to graduating from high school and going through what I know is going to be the experience of a lifetime. I am very grateful to the members of the Rotary Club who give their time and have given me this opportunity.

Juan's Journals

October 3 Journal



I cannot express how grateful I am to Rotary everywhere for making this possible for teenagers everywhere including me. The 86 hours of no sleep were worth it immediately when I stepped off of the plane. Admitingly I was in a way born into this exchange because of my two sisters having been exchange students but now I know that it was the BEST decision of my life.

I have only been here for a short time and I already feel like this is my home and I don't want to leave. School is AMAZING - everyone is very friendly. My family is great. Ever since the first day I have felt welcomed. I have three brothers who teach me Danish which is slowly but surely progressing. I have seen incredible things like World War II original bunkers and giant cannons, to jellyfish in the beach which was freezing and I was convinced to jump into by my host brothers. The weather is a drastic change but the great experience I am having so far is completely worth it.

Again THANK YOU Rotary for everything you have done for me, any news will be sent to you right away!

Mange Tak,

Juan Barona

Jeg elsker Denmark!!!!!

January 31 Journal

January begins a new year, but for us exchangers the year began on our departure date. Five months! Cannot believe it went by so quick. Now I've seen the oldies who have gone back to their countries and it's unbelievable that almost half my time here is over.

The past six months have been incredible. I've learned that the Danish culture is definitely different than mine. The holidays are now over; celebrations were a bit different, like for example the amount and size of fireworks every family buys. The sky was lit at 12 am on new years day - it was amazing.

The language has come a very long way, I can now communicate with anyone and I have just started reading my first book in Danish - Harry Potter hehe. I am currently SKIING in Norway with my host family and the skills have definitely improved for when I go skiing in AUSTRIA! I'm really excited about everything, especially now that the language is no longer a problem.

Gotta go to bed now another day of skiing in Norway tomorrow.

Sov Godt Florida!