Monday, November 9, 2009

I Love Exchange.

This week, I love exchange. It has been filled with me studying, reading blogs, studying, talking to exchangers, studying, orientation, studying. I'm meant to be studying now.... But I can't be bothered!

But I am loving exchange, and the fact that I'll be learning another language, gaining a new family, making friends. Ahhh so so so cool.

I think I have finally accepted that I won't be seeing my family and friends for a year. I think it sucks, but I think the adventure that awaits is much more thrilling than to not go and stay home.


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

P.S. My orientation is in.... two days!!


Host Families and Visas- Spain

Ohh I'm so over my "I hate exchange" mode. I've been looking at people's experiences via Facebook, and looking at photos and blogs and all that, and I'm just so excited! I'm such a rollercoaster of emotions, often being incredibly excited about exchange, to regretting my decision to go on a year long exchange.

I've been having a really busy couple of months.... I've finally finished school, but still have my HSC- final exams. I have two left to go, and then I'm finally free! Although I miss some aspects of school, I really do enjoy not being at school. These past couple of weeks have been pretty stressful with my exams, and my family also had a health scare with my Dad, but he is all fine now, which is great. Although I have so much to live for now, here, in Australia, my mind is never far from Spain, and what my experience will be like there. I SO want to know where I am going!! But, I got an email from Student Exchange Australia this morning, saying that I probs won't find out until a month or less to my departure.... AND I have a date for when I leave!! Here's the email that I got:

Dear Laura,

Hello or Hola as you will need to start using.

I wanted to send you this email for a couple of reasons. The first is so that I can make sure you and your parents have my email address. This way you can contact me regarding anything that crops up and you will always have my contact details even whilst you are away.

The second reason was to get your permission to send your email address onto the other students that will be going to Spain at the same time as you. I like to get my students in contact with each other so that you can talk to other people that are going through the same thing as you.

At the moment I am looking at flights for you and I wanted to confirm some dates. I have you down as a 12 month program. This means that your travel dates will be approximately 5-10th February 2010 returning 5th-10th February 2011. Naturally this is subject to change based on flight availability and visas being issued on time. This is an approximation to give you some idea about the coming months.

The big thing that I wanted to point out was host families and visas. First, host families, ideally we like to have you placed with a host family 1 month prior to departure. With Spain however we find that this can come a little bit later than that. There is always someone to be placed first and someone to get placed last and then everyone else falls in between. These things take time but I will always keep you updated as things are progressing.

Visas; I have sent out your visa pack, if you have not yet received this please let me know asap. The visa will take you some time to get together. Please be sure that you are not traveling on your passport at least 6 weeks prior to your scheduled departure as this will be needed for your visa. As I may have already said to you sometimes the visas can be delayed by the consulates and this may mean a delayed departure. Again this is not ideal but it is something that has happened and I want to make you fully aware of this.

Please feel free to contact me via email or phone if you have anything you need to discuss. The next step is flights and I will be sending out that information soon.


I'm so excited!