Sunday, May 15, 2011

Placement and Outbound Orientation

Hello everyone!
So this last weekend was full a lot of excitement and fun for me. This was because of several reasons. One, I got my placement last Thursday and it turns out that I will be spending this next year in Turku, Finland. For those of you who don't know. Turku is in the farthest southwest part of the Finnish mainland. It's not the farthest southwest point because there are many islands in between the mainland and the "open ocean" (actually called the Baltic Sea). I am really excited for that because Turku is the fifth largest city in Finland, and I have never lived in a city ever in my life. I have always lived in Dillon, Colorado. Which if you don't know, is pretty small. In my county there is only around ten thousand people, whereas Turku has around 200,000 people in the same amount of space.  Also I will be going to a pretty big school, which will be different for me, always going to a considerably small school.
This is a picture on google earth of my house and my school. The more southern dot is my house and the dot that is in the city is my school. This distance is about five miles, I think. I am also excited for the bragging rights to say that I will be living on an island because my house will be on the island of Hirvensalo. I really don't know that much concerning my host family and my host club, because they haven't contacted me at all, other than me getting their address through my guarantee form (for those of you who don't know, the guarantee form is something that the Rotary has that lists your host family, school, hosting Rotary club, ect. You need it to get a student visa, though since I have a norwegian passport, I will not need to obtain visa since Norway and Finland are both nordic countries). I am hoping to email them this week and get more information.
Me with some fellow exchange students, I'm the redhead. 
Another big thing that happened to me this weekend was outbound orientation. This is a weekend when all the outbound students in my Rotary district come together and we get tons of information. And when I say tons of information I mean TONS of information. We got information on things from insurance, to plane tickets to cultural differences. We presented to the group about our countries as well. Which was fun to hear about all the different countries that people are going to next year (there are 27 exchange students in our district this year).  Overall it was fun because there we got to hang out and spend time with the other exchange students. But I'm not going to go into this a whole lot because I could go on for pages about how fun this weekend was and I want to keep this relatively short. So Moi-moi (bye-bye) for now :)