I thought I’d update all of you on my life! It’s been about a month since I last posted (and it really doesn't seem like it’s been that long), and I’ve been busy! I’ve really had a crazy last week or so.
So, I missed about two and a half weeks of school a while back because I had the flu, so I’ve been trying to catch up with my schoolwork on top of studying for exams, which have already happened for everyone else (mine are delayed), and doing exchange things. North Carolina schools get out so early! In Massachusetts I would have school for another month! So, really, I should be out of school, but I’m stuck doing work because I got sick (great way to start my summer, huh?). As a result, I haven't had as much time to work on my Danish and other preparations as I would like.
Last Saturday, the 18th, I had my first AFS orientation! Though I already knew a lot of what they told us (I’ve done a LOT of research), it was still a lot of fun! And I loved meeting other AFSers. I talked to some currently hosted exchange students from Sweden, Norway, and Finland, who told me about Denmark and life in Scandinavia. I also met some great outgoing students going to all sorts of interesting places (Finland, Austria, Argentina, Spain, India, and more) and some returnees (from Germany, Indonesia, Turkey, Russia, France, and possibly a couple more) who had interesting and useful insights. Overall, it was a lot of fun!
From the orientation, I drove straight to New York City! I’d never been to the city before, and it was so exciting! I had half a day in the city Sunday and the morning on Monday and then I had my visa appointment (yay!). I went to the Consulate General of Denmark in the afternoon, which I thought was really interesting. It was very secure, with thick glass windows to the people and doors that had to be buzzed open. We got there early, and a couple people in front of me weren’t there, so we got helped early. I was nervous that I might not have some of the paperwork, but everything was in order and we were done pretty quickly. I got my fingerprints taken for the visa (a first for me), which was interesting. And the amazing, wonderful, super exciting thing is that I already have my approval! All of the info I received from both the Danish Consulate/Immigration Service and AFS said that it could take months to get approved, so it was absolutely a pleasant surprise for me to open my e-mail on Friday and have an approval letter from Denmark waiting for me! I don’t yet have the actual residence card, but I’ll get it soon after I arrive in Denmark. No more worrying about my visa! Here’s a picture of the sign for the Consulate, just because it’s exciting:
On another note, the title to this post means (and this might be wrong, but let’s hope it’s not!): “Updates on school, orientation, permit, and Danish!” I’ve been working on my Danish language learning, and I think it’s going well! I’ve gotten more than the colors and numbers learned, anyway – I’m into some other adjectives, nouns and some basic verbs. I’ve been using some great free online resources. And what’s more, my mom met a woman who grew up in Denmark, and she said she’ll help me with my Danish! I’m really excited, because I think that getting help from a native speaker will be very useful. I want to have some sort of base to go off of when I arrive. My phone is also set to Danish, which is helping me with some basic things. Here are pictures of what the passcode screens look like (with the lovely Danish flag, or Dannebrog, as my background – can you tell I’m excited?), as well as the keyboard when I text (I can change it to an American keyboard if I need to, though!). When I go on Danish websites now (trying to find out any info about Denmark I can), I can pick out words here and there, which is encouraging. But I still have a long way to go!
|And a beautiful plant, too|
And I thought some of you would enjoy a (somewhat distorted, sorry) picture of the lobby of our beautiful hotel in Manhattan, the Roosevelt:
|and another from above|
|The date says søndag 26. maj,|
and the bottom says lås op.
|I love that the space bar is|
mellemrum! Extra letters are
æ, ø, and å. New
message is ny besked.
Finally, I’d like to thank all my family members and friends who have read this blog so far! I love to hear from you all, and I’m so glad you’re all excited for me! Thank you for reading, commenting, and sharing your thoughts with me and my mom. You’re all so great and supportive!
I’ll probably write again fairly soon, but until then, hej hej!
P.S. - LESS THAN TEN WEEKS! (67 days until I land in København!)