The following is an update from Kylie Santella from Germany:

This past month has been crazy full as will my next month be, I guess this happens at the end of the year. 


I have spent a lot a lot a lot of time with my friends here. There have also been way too many school free days in the last month, frankly I don't even know why we even go to school in May. So I spent the first weekend of May celebrating the day the church in my village was made holy. It was a crazy weekend of fun. I learnt a lot about the culture of the little villages all around Germany. There was a lot of dancing. The next weekend I went to yet another festival in a different village because they were celebrating the day that the duke (I think it was a duke) decided that the peasants of the village owned the forest. The whole thing was in a forest. The day before that I was in a neighbouring city visiting a girl who plans to go to canada next year who needed help. But first she showed me around the city (even though I've been there like 40 times already) it was cool to see how the people who actually live there feel about it though. And we had a barbecue which is really typical for my area of Germany. I then went to the capital of my state for a small exchange student get together. Yet another few days of fun. And I went to a confirmation the next day (that weeken was really full). What is really cool about the culture in Germany is that at 14 either you get confirmed with the church or you have a "jugendfeier" which is celebrating the coming of age of an atheist and it's actually almost the same thing outside of the fact that there's no 2 hour church ceremony, I was at one of those two weeks later, also cool. I also spent a few days in a town called smalkalden with my rotary club. There we saw the state garden show for the year (my rotary club is really into it because my town is hosting it in 2017) Other personal fun activity highlights of this last month are, kayaking with my family, driving 347 km/h on the autobahn, and learning how to make proper thuringer klöse.


My host family situation could not be described as anything other than excellent. They are actually the perfect family living in the perfect area. I was supposed to switch another time but my yeo is now letting me stay until the end here. Which is really excellent because of how great this family is. I have two brothers, but one of them is thirty so he's more like the cool uncle who once in a while gives me money for food. And the other brother is 16 and in my class at school so it's really easy to get along with. He even introduce me to all of his friends in our little village who are now my friends  and he ha no problems with that. The mum is also really sweet, she's constantly cracking jokes and making me laugh, the dad as we'll. he's a really big Rolling Stones fan and likes to talk a lot about them but it's really nice. 


In school it's been really boring. I still don't really have a proper class but I've made friends in every class that I have so it's really not a problem that I'm switching grade levels all the time. The real problem is that it's just boring. The teachers don't particularly care what I do and don't usually bother to let me work with the class (not printing enough papers etc.) bug most of the teachers are really nice. I still hae a private German lesson every week and my teacher is super sweet. Because I really don't have much to learn any more we spend most of our time just talking in German. Today for example we just walked around my city and talked about its history. There really isn't much for me to do in school which kinda sucks but I don't mind cause at least I see most of my friends there. 


I've recently been having problems with my bank in Canada. But I think that is now almost completely sorted out. Tomorrow I get the bank card from my counsellor and the rest shouldn't be a problem. Other than that I'm really problem free. 


I've decided I'm really going to use every last minute I have here because I'm really going to miss it but that slowly getting really stressful but at this point I wouldn't have it any other way :) 


Liebe Gruße,

Kylie Santella