Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Time Skips

You might hate me for what I'm about to do, but honestly I don't have the motivation/time/energy to write out the whole story so I'm summarizing.

Fehmarn: Final Days

So after hearing that news from my area rep I spent the next day pretty much avoiding everyone in the house, which didn't work too well since that morning, as usual, we all ate breakfast and it was unusually quiet.

On Tuesday we got a call from YFU saying they wanted me to leave on Wednesday. My host mother and I both said that was impossible so we settled for Friday. I would have moved to Itsaho, about 2 hours from Fehmarn to the north see. The father was a minister, and the mother a nurse, if I remember correctly. They had a daughter and a son also I believe.

Well I wasn't too happy about the situation because I was scared of the religious aspects of things, after speaking to various people I decided I would give it a try and see how it went. The next day (Thursday) about twenty minutes AFTER sending BOTH my suitcases to this new family they called and said that they decided they didn't want to have me. So there I was, staying in Fehmarn, where I'd started to get close to my host family, while my suitcases of ALL my stuff traveled to a family I wasn't going to.

The week finished and on Wednesday we got another call from YFU saying that I was leaving on Saturday for a family in Willich, by Dusseldorf. That friday night was one of my most memorable nights in Deutschland, and will forever be.

I've always thought it's odd how at the strangest times in the strangest of situations you bond with some of the most unlikely people. That was proven to me once more as I chased my host sister through Bisdorf as she drunkenly kicked out street lights for half an hour. It was that night that I really, really felt like I'd found a family.

The next morning was, as expected, complete chaos. I woke up at seven something and ran around like a chicken with it's head cut off trying to get all my crap together and into the car. Breakfast was nice and soon I was saying my goodbyes to my host father, brother, and grandparents. I can't help but reflect on how much my host grandfather on Fehmarn reminded me of my recently deceased grandfather.

At the train station/stop in Burg me and my host sister, and mother stood around waiting while the train sat there. It was around 9 in the morning and I think I had about 3-4 bags, it was ridiculous. When they flagged the train and said it was leaving I got on and was the only person in my car. I waved to my host family as the train rolled away, and I was crying in a matter of seconds, before my car even reached the end of the platform. I continued to cry until we'd cross the bridge roughly fifteen or more minutes later. The ride was long to Hamburg, and after half an hour at Hamburg, it was another long ride to Dusseldorf in a tiny cramped train. When i stepped off the train in Dusseldorf all I wanted to do was get back on and go back home to Fehmarn, I actually almost didn't get off...

My host family found me quickly after I just stood awkwardly in the crowd for a minute or two trying to catch my breath.  My host mother was a doctor and my host dad a teacher, i had two host sisters one my age 16, and one 17 turning 18 in nov or something.

I'm not going to go into detail about this family as it was the darkest, most stressful part of my year. Basically there was a lot of problems personality wise between me and the family. I attended a  Catholic private schule, that i biked to every day, most days in the rain.

Classes I was taking in Willich:
Infomatic (Computers)

I stayed in that family for 3 weeks before speaking with my area rep and coming to the conclusion that I needed to move. So after a week of hearing nothing my host family call YFU on Friday and told them about their travel plans for wednesday and how I needed to leave before then. So on Monday afternoon I got an email from YFU telling me about my next temporary family, and that I'm leaving Tuesday. So I spent all of monday packing all my stuff back up.

Tuesday I ate breakfast by myself and loaded all my stuff into the car, then said a few awkward goodbyes with my host sister and got into the car with my other host sister and my host father for the 40 minute drive to Pulheim (24 minutes outside of Köln).

When I first arrived I was a bit surprised to find that my family was Turkish, but I almost instantly felt better when I saw the evil eyes all over the house. I met my host sister and my host mother since my host dad was at work still. I knew from the start that I really liked this family. My host dad and I bonded over Turkish music and bellydance, while me and my host sister bonded over 'teenage stuff'. My host mom and I bonded over cat & dog stories and tea. My german is getting much better since I actually speak it much more now.

When I first arrived here I arrived over the first week of fall break (2 weeks) so I had a week and a half to settle in before school started up again. The first day was chaos, especially because the schule didn't know I would be coming. So after a first week of chaos I've settled in. I have the same schedual as my host sister until after winter break when I'll get my own time table.

Classes I'm taking:
Kunst - Art
Geschichte - History
SoWi - Politic I think

So I know my mother will be emailing me to inform me that this is not NEARLY enough details for her, but I'll address that in a later post seeing as it's 8:32 at the moment, and I'd really like to inhale another cup of tea and some chocolate.


Just another Pulheimer


  1. Fortunately, or rather, unfortuanately, I do know the details, and they are painful. It's sad that YFU didn't want to actually do their job and MATCH a family to Heather, or even INTERVIEW the family before they accepted them.

    But fortunately, the very squeaky wheel gets the oil, especially when additional help is enlisted from the main YFU office. And the result is, as Heather said, a family she loves and is amazingly well suited to. It also helps to attend a public, non religious school when you are not religious.

    A third family to love, and a cat in the family too!!!

    1. Alls well if it ends well. :)

      Remember mom, *Andy ;)