Friday, June 22, 2012


After MONTHS of waiting (two and a half isn't a lot but it's enough to make things plural!) I have a HOST FAMILY!!!!!!!!!

Yes, you read that correctly. My phone buzzed while I was getting ready to go out, and I immediately stopped what I was doing and logged onto my account. So without further ado, here is my new family:

Bérengère is my mother, and she works as a pharmacist. I have two older sisters, one named Margaux who is almost 24 and another named Louise, who will turn 20 while I am on exchange. My family also has a cat. I live in Vedrin, Namur, Belgium. It is about one hour away from Brussels, one hour away from Liège, and about 15 minutes away from Namur, the capital of Wallonia.

I've added both my mother and Louise, but I didn't get the email address of my oldest sister, so we'll see if I can find her. I've already been in contact with Louise, it's amazing and she and my mother seem very nice from the photos I've seen! I think they've hosted other students before.

I'm extremely excited and it all seems so bizarre, I've been waiting for this experience to feel "real" for nearly three years and now it DEFINITELY feels real now.

I hope I can update you all very soon with more information on my new life!!!

2 Months

Monday, June 4, 2012


I had my Pre-Departure Orientation just yesterday. It was an all day event, and I really enjoyed it. I didn't learn anything particularly new because (being the freak that I am) I had already read information from the internet and the AFS Wiki because I am just too impatient for my own good I guess! Plus, I've been a member on Cultures Shocked for almost a year. Actually, I just checked my profile page and it'll be a year tomorrow, time flies! But I was reading info from the forum long before I became a member. There are some things I knew that others didn't, even some of the volunteers and returnees were asked questions that they hadn't been asked before, but since Cultures Shocked is such a huge community of exchangers, I had access to so much information.

It seems most people in my female dominated PDO are going to Turkey or are doing summer programs. I was the only Belgian bound, which didn't surprise me, but I was able to talk to a returnee from The Netherlands, which is close enough to Belgium.

I'm still anxiously awaiting news of my placement and host family but I had a lot of fun at the Pre-Departure Orientation, and loved being able to help out others. I can definitely see myself being a volunteer with AFS in the future.

In other news, I got my travel itinerary and am now looking for domestic flights to JFK.... how weird! I've been waiting so long and now it's all finally happening - and fast!