Anna, outbound to Norway

I finally had two Rotary camps. Well, the first one was a district conference in Hamar. Here I was able to meet the other exchange students in my district. They were all Australians or went to Australia on exchange. My host sister Liv Nenny was there too. The Australians have been here for ten months. We had to ‘mingle’ with Rotarians and I was proud to have people think I had been here as long as the Australians had with my language skills. We also had to stand on the stage in front of 150 Rotarians and introduce ourselves. Then we sang ‘Let it Go’ from Frozen in Norwegian. That was interesting. Many people were laughing but they were laughing with us. We received a big round of applause afterwards and that was a wonderful. Then, I had another camp the next week where I learned about Norway’s history (yes, about the Vikings). We also had some language lessons but it was hard because the teacher spoke a different dialect than the majority of the class. The camp was so much fun. I was able to meet all of Norway’s 27 inbounds. We went bowling and had pizza.

On Saturday, we went to another conference and they wanted all of the exchange students to perform something. So all of the countries grouped together. The Americans danced to ‘American’ songs like the ‘YMCA’ and the ‘Cupid Shuffle’. The Australians did Australian slang. The Latin Americans did poetry and a Taiwanese girl sang a song she wrote. We all made so many friends in such a little time it was hard to leave them in the end. It was nice to have other exchange students to talk to.

I was expecting bread but not THIS much bread! Bread for breakfast. Bread for lunch. Sometimes we even have bread for dinner. Don’t worry, I’m not complaining! I like it. The most typical way to eat bread is with butter and cheese. An ‘open’ sandwich, with no top slice. However, you can dress it up with egg, ham, jam, peanut butter, or chocolate. In my family, we have Friday night tacos. However, it is not tacos; it’s the tortilla wraps that you roll up into a burrito. Many families have some sort of taco night. It is the exact same in every house, ground beef and a buffet of toppings. Saturday is Dad's Pizza. Pepperoni is never a topping. Its always ground beef. Sometimes we have had corn and hot dogs as toppings. Saturdays we eat the pizza in front of the TV and watch their favorite TV shows. I am always looking forwards to Fridays and Saturdays! One of my favorite foods so far is “Kjøttkakke og brun” sauce. Its like meatballs with a brown sauce. It is often served with potatoes.

Some days I feel great! I feel like I can understand everybody around me. It feels as if I will be fluent by next week. Then, some days I wake up and it seems as if everybody is mumbling words to me. I can’t understand half of what they are saying. Then, it feels like I will never learn the language. On those days, I come home very sad and exhausted. But then I remember I WANT to learn the language and I do NOT want to give up.

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