Sierra, Outbound to Denmark

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I can't believe I've been in Denmark for almost a month. The time has flown by. Sometimes I forget that I'm over 4,500 miles away from my family and friends. During my first week here, I stayed with my counselor so that she could tell me all that I need to know about Aalborg and the rules for me here.

Aalborg is such a lovely place. The streets are so clean and quiet, they have amazing shops, and of course the beautiful limfjord. We visited my counselor's second home in Egholm, a little island on the limfjord. The houses are so quaint and woodsy. I also went to Blokhus with my first host family during my first week. The water temperature is quite different from Florida's beaches, but it was so refreshing. I also went swimming in the limfjord at the fjordparken in the morning when it was cold and windy.

I started school after being here for a week, which I was nervous for because I've never started at a new school in which I don't know anyone. My classmates were so welcoming to me and always make sure that I understand what is going on and what the teacher is saying. I haven't been speaking a lot of Danish because I can't pronounce anything and everyone always speaks to me in English. For me, Danish is so hard to learn, partly because of the pronunciation but mostly because everyone speaks English and it's very hard to force yourself to speak in a language that you can't fully express yourself in.

After school on most days I usually go into town with the other exchange students to a cafe or shopping. Our school is about a five minute walk from the Main Street in Aalborg. I'm not used to hanging out with friends after school so often in Orlando, because I usually have too much homework to be able to do anything besides sports and school. I bike to and from school about three miles each way, which is a great exercise and also helps me wake up in the morning.

I started volleyball practice two days after I arrived in Denmark. I like the practices and my team a lot, and it's also another activity to keep me in shape after eating so much Danish food and bread. I also go to my Rotary Club meetings every Wednesday. It's cool to see how different Rotary Clubs function around the world, even though I can't understand most of what is being said in the meetings.

This week I went to language camp in Bjerringbro with all of the 157 exchange students that just arrived in Denmark. It was probably one of the most fun weeks I've ever had in my life. I met so many new people from so many different countries and got to know the other exchange students that attend my school better. Other exchange students are so easy to get along with and make friends with because we're all in the same boat. I learned a lot about the Danish culture as well as the language.

I've had such a great time in Denmark so far and learned so much about myself.