Category: 2015/16 Klára O. (Czech Republic)

It has been some time, since I first stepped into my new room, first saw my teachers, host family and classmates. Sometimes it feels like it was just yesterday, when I said goodbye to everyone I knew and headed to Great Britain. Time never stops and there is always so much to do. My friends recently started worrying about what to buy for their families and friends for Christmas and I started planning what I will do during the winter holiday in Czech Republic. It is amazing, how easy it is to get used to this life. In past two months, most of those exciting new experiences have become my daily routine. I still enjoy most of the days; but now things have become normal, ordinary thing to have classes in English, to talk to my family through computer screen and other aspects of my life here.

Recently, we had a half term holiday. Those eleven days without school felt really great and I was looking forward to the holiday for a long time. I hoped that I would get to finish all of those things I’ve always forgotten to do during the normal weeks. I really wanted to be productive. Well, reality was a little bit different. During first two days I stayed at home and only went out for coffee with friends or something like that, I had fun and relaxed, which I definitely enjoyed. On Sunday we decided to try carving pumpkins with my friends. Most of us come from countries where Halloween is not celebrated so it was new experience for us. Because we decided to do it at my place, I finally had to clean up my room. However, as I look around my room, I must admit that it didn’t last very long! It took us a while to figure out the best way of carving pictures and patterns into pumpkins, but after a while it was no problem for us. It did not always turned out as it was supposed to, but I think that all of the pumpkins looked great in the end! So, every one of us got a pumpkin and Tanya also took the insides of the pumpkins and made a pumpkin soup the next day. Afterwards, we ended up in a small coffee in Christchurch. They serve absolutely amazing pancakes and waffles there. On Monday, Tanya and me made sushi together. I’ve never done this before, but she had fair amount of experience and patiently told me what to do. It was delicious and we had an opportunity to chat and have fun.

On Friday, I visited Penny, the other student living in my host family, in her house and stayed with her until Sunday. She is British and she goes to the same college as I do. She chose this college, because of the sports academy programme there, which is only provided by a few of British colleges. She lives quite far away from Brockenhurst in Reading, so she stays with a host family. She plays rugby and she really love every aspect of this sport. Good example is that on Halloween, we had to watch the final rugby match. I didn’t mind much and I understand, that she loves watching and playing rugby. However, I don’t find watching sports amusing and I don’t understand the rules of rugby, as it is nor very popular in Czech republic, so I survived it only by reading my book for most of the time. But for the rest of the weekend, we had great time. We went shopping and she showed me many interesting places in Reading.

Shortly afterwards, it was the beginning of school again. In Drama and Theatre studies, we started working on our plays. We were divided into groups and given a play. Our group is the smallest one, with only two members, but I like our play and I’m looking forward to working on it. We also had to start writing our course work, which I’m quite afraid of, but I hope I will manage. In other subjects we did couple of tests, but nothing extremely hard. One think that has been happening more frequently lately is our teachers, talking about the exams. And the more they talk about it, the more worried I am. It seems that there are strict rules to everything. There are correct ways, to answer certain types of questions, certain information you always need to include, so it’s not enough to just answer correctly, your response also must have specific form, to fit the marking scheme. However, we do practice answering these questions time to time, so I believe, I will get to know the system.

Otherwise, I still really enjoy the college and I am glad that I’ve chosen those subjects. I’m also getting along well with British students from my classes, especially in drama. However, no matter how enjoyable life here is, I really look forward to coming back to Czech Republic and seeing my friends and family again.