It was early evening when our party of about 12 arrived in Hamburg, having
sat on a short flight from Heathrow. Before passing through arrivals we
were promptly reminded of our manners and out we went to enjoy the latter
half of our German Exchange. On arriving at my partner’s house, I expected
to be told that I was to have long day ahead of me tomorrow and this would
be the hint for me to eat up supper and get some sleep. Little did I know
that I was to be warmly welcomed to the Country by my exchange partner’s
four brothers’, two sisters’, and a barking dog. It was overwhelming to
say the least.
The following morning I was awoken by a rather loud shout “FRÜHSTÜCK!”
Initially I assumed this to be the name of one of the seven siblings but
soon recognised this was the call for breakfast. This first day was
planned to be spent at my partner’s school, so I quickly consumed my
cornflakes with hazelnuts and soon after was enjoying a 2km bike ride to
the ‘Gymnasium’ (school), where I was met by the rest of the English group
and of course Mr.Underwood. During their school hours we were kindly asked
to participate in many of the lessons, including Sport! School finished at
1pm after which we went off with our individual German partners to be
entertained for the afternoon.
During the weekend each German family amused their guest in their own
ways, whether it be taking the English student sight seeing in the city
centre, to the theatre or swimming. My partner had arranged for me and
several other partners to visit a major German theme park ‘Heide Park’.
Expectedly this turned out to be a thoroughly thrilling and enjoyable day
out, in which I got to socialise with many of my partner’s German friends
whilst also enjoying the company of my own English friends.
Later on in the week our English group visited two relatively close towns
to Hamburg in East Germany. They were Schwerin and Lübeck. These outings
provided a fine opportunity for us to experience Germany’s railway and see
some historically reputable sights. We were guided round both towns by
locally organised English speakers showing us all the significant sights
of the towns whilst informing us with historical background.
This exchange not only offered me an ideal opportunity to improve my
German language from staying with my partner’s hospitable family I soon
became accustomed to much of the German culture. Through outings to towns
and sights with the rest of the English exchange group I was able to
experience Germany from a tourist’s eye, sighting many well-renowned
attractions. All in all, this exchange provided a memorable trip which I
would strongly advise any younger boys’ studying German to participate
Cheers Mr. Underwood!