Denmark RSS feed for this section
national flag of denmark

Our eyes were so red from crying…

 

 

The last weekend was awful.  I was so sad, but I missed my family and friends at home.  I had the time of my life.  I was blessed to have those people, that family.  The match couldn’t have been more perfect.  An incredible bond.  At the airport all of our friends were there to surprise us and say goodbye.  Our eyes were so red from crying, crying, crying.

 

national flag of denmark

Mom, Dad: I’m leaving in three weeks…

 

I wanted to get away from my parents.  I was the baby of the family and had three siblings 7-10 yrs older.  My parents were solid middle- to upper-class, my mother was a travel agent, and my dad owned his own business.  My mom handled Asia and Europe for years and they traveled extensively all over the world. They were also scuba divers and instructors back in the 60s and went on exotic dive trips.

My mom read an article in the Chicago Tribune about YFU and spending a summer in the Philippines, so she cut it out and gave it to me and said this might be something cool to do.  The year before I found in the back of Boys Life magazine a scuba camp in the Cayman Islands and so I had done that.  We also hosted a problem exchange student from Mexico when I was six and my parents took him in.

 

English: The cover of Boys' Life published Dec...

English: The cover of Boys’ Life published December 1913. Read more: http://www.best-norman-rockwell-art.com/norman-rockwell-boys-life-cover-1913-12-santa-and-scouts-in-snow.html#ixzz1cE1NOO00 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

My parents traveled a lot, and when they did they gave my older brother power of attorney.  They went on a two week trip and I got my brother to sign the application about a month past the due date.  I really wanted to go to Switzerland and Germany because that was my heritage.

Since I had to pick a third country I picked Denmark because a teacher went there and thought it was pretty cool and the people were friendly.  I got a response right away that said Switzerland wouldn’t take me because I was too young and Germany was full and wanted me to wait a year.  But Denmark would take me.

So when my parents got back I went up to them and said, “Hey, I’m leaving in about three weeks and I’ll be gone a year.”  They weren’t against it, but my dad did the math and figured it was cheaper to send a kid away for the year than to keep him.  My Danish parents sent their son to America so they jumped into it without much notice as well, so it was meant to be.

Flag of Greenland

Hey, Lady! You left your bag!

 

Ilulissat, Greenland

Ilulissat, Greenland, Image by kaet44 via Flickr

 

 “We stayed for a week in Denmark, and then went to Greenland.

When I first got to Denmark, I was in the airport and I went to the bathroom.  In the United States, there’s usually a box attached to the wall for women’s tampons.

In Denmark, they usually have a bag attached with a clip, and of course I didn’t know this.  This was the first time I was ever out of the country.  I walked in the bathroom and saw this clip with this bag on it and I assumed that it was a place to put the bag that you were carrying.

So this lady had just come out of the bathroom, and I walked in and saw the bag sitting there, so I took it off the hook, and ran out chasing this lady going “Your bag!!”  I stopped and I was like, uhhh, and it dawned on me what the bag was for.

In Denmark we got picked up by a chaperone and we almost missed the flight because the chaperone, who was going to be my AFS contact person and also my Norse teacher up at the school I was going to, bought us extra alcohol.  Once we were on the plane she bought champagne for us to drink!

If only my friends back home could see my teacher buying alcohol for us!  I was in a state of shock.”

Calving Ice Berg in Illulissat Icefjord

Calving Icegerg,Illulissat, Image by BortaBra.se via Flickr

Enhanced by Zemanta