Monday, October 31, 2011

Day 85

Zondag, 30 Oktober 2011

Great, lazy day.  Woke up late, had a long breakfast, went back upstairs.  Read a little bit, talked to some kids from back home, and then Marcela and I decided to start watching Hairspray.  About halfway through Patrick and Truut drove us to a fundraiser thing Robyne's Judo club was putting on.  It was the same thing as the fanfare - eating, mainly mussels and fries.  Truut's parents also came, but since we couldn't talk to them, Marcela and I just talked for like 2 hours to each other about drumline and her old dance group.  They're so similar!

Seeing as how we weren't doing anything at the dinner, we walked home, finished watching our movie, and did some more reading.  Really calm day.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Day 84

Zaterdag, 29 Oktober 2011

Got to sleep in a bit, got ready for the day, and left for Antwerpen!  We (Patrick, Truut, Marcela and I) first stopped off at the American Food Store... once we found it.  It was amazing!  So many foods I didn't even realize weren't here.  Bought a 12 back of Mountain Dew (for sharing - the stuff Mr. Hayes sent is for me alone).  15 euros.  Ouch.  Got stuff to make peanut butter blossoms and smores, and Marcela got Reese's because she thought they looked good.  Also got a single can of three different flavors of dew, and two different flavors of Coke, just so they could see part of our variety.

Parked the car, and then walked around Antwerpen a bit.  Got icecream, which was a great way to start the afternoon.  Window shopped, looked around some streets we hadn't been on before.  Saw some horse drawn carriages in a square - Marcela and I stood there petting them when Patrick and Truut went to a store.  Really made me miss my Reg.  :(

We also went inside this really old theater - it was a great place, and it made me really want to go to a show again.  I love live theater!

In the theater

Walked around some more, made some pasta at a really nice Italian place, and then crammed on a metro to the Night of the Proms!

Oh man, that was really fun.  I don't really know how to describe it, besides it being a great night.  Basically, there was a stage with like four different "parts" - a full orchestra, an electric band, a nice chunk of singers, and then one of the main singers that would come on.  Here's a link to see who was performing.  It was really just an amazing night.  I recognized quite a few songs (Valerie, Time To Say Goodbye, etc), and they even played the "Typewriter Song", which my school band did my freshman year.  Of course, it was a different version, but it really brought back memories.

Marcela and I after the NOTP

Anyway, by the time we got home it was pas midnight and I was just dead tired from the day, so I basically went straight to bed.  That's about it.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Day 83

Vrijdag, 28 Oktober 2011

A year ago today, I was leaving my house for the long drive to DC for the Rally to Restore Sanity/Fear.  I can't believe it's already been a year!

Sunrise was really pretty this morning as well, and the weather was really nice.  Like, I didn't really need my coat at all, and even Marcela thought it was nice.  THAT'S when you know it was good weather.

Period in the library, then choir.  Apparently we have a mini concert for the school after break?  I have no idea really, because my classmates didn't really explain it to me.  We practiced a few of the songs in the basement of the church again, so that was pretty cool.  Left for Latin, only to remember halfway there that it was cancelled (the kids had a field trip with a different class).  Back to the school, read in the library.  Music theory, aka, write in my notebook.

Lunched outside with Santi and Marcela, and then went inside and watched the game recap for the World Series game.  Oh man, I can't believe I'm missing THIS series - it's so good!  I got Santi to watch too, which was fun.  It's really not the same watching only the recap, but I suppose that's the price I have to pay for being here.  *sigh*

Music comp, which was more time to just talk with classmates and write.  Art history next, but by then I had a headache, so I spent most of the class just staring at the clock.  Home, went to nap.  Woke up to Marcela coming into my room saying my package had arrived.  And guess what was inside?

Yep, Mountain Dew and A&W!!!  I of course had to have one of the Dews right after dinner.  Had Marcela, Patrick, and Truut try a little bit.  They couldn't place the taste either.  :P  Now they know why I had such a hard time describing the taste.

But seriously, this was my first time having it in what, 82 days?  I had some on the drive to the airport, but none since.  TASTES SO GOOD; man I missed it.  I have to give a big shout out to my dad's friend Mr. Hayes for sending this to me.  Believe me, he's getting a great gift when I get home.

After dinner, did some stuff online, back downstairs to have cereal with Marcela, and then back upstairs.  Got a lot of things typed up I needed to type, so that was nice.  Basically just had a relaxing night.  Feeling pretty tired, so gonna get some sleep.  It's a school vacation next week, and I don't need to get up early tomorrow (only plans are in the afternoon).  WHOOO SLEEP!  Slaapwel!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Day 82

Donderdag, 27 Oktober 2011

Man, the sunrise on the way to school was absolutely beautiful today - of course, it had to be on the day I didn't have my camera, but Marcela and I took a long time just staring out the window to look at it.  First two periods of the day were the note learning class, which was pretty fun.  The kids just learned about sixteenth notes today, so it was pretty fun to see how they reacted to that.  :P  But it's a fun class - my singing is at like the same level as theirs (not good), and it's fun to learn the Dutch for everything.  (I feel like I say this every week...).

Next period was just in the library.  It was pretty hard to stay awake - thank goodness it's a break next week.  :P  Math next, aka, reading a book about numbers in English.  Could be worse.  :P  Lunched with Santi and Marcela, like usual.  They stayed in the cafeteria because it's right next to the gym (they had it next), so I just went to the library after I finished eating. Checked my messages, all that jazz.

Pop song class next - basically just wrote down the chords for the refrain (aka, the only part where we have music and lyrics worked out together).  Tried singing it, still some problems.  Jazz playing next, which was okay.  Like I say every week, I wish there was just some hard music to try and learn, not just repeating 4 bars.  Then Jazz Theory, where we basically just listened to music from someone's iPod and the teacher tried to figure out the keys it was in.  Got pretty close to falling asleep there.

Home, went online a bit, had dinner, studied a bit of Latin, and then watched "Little Miss Sunshine" with Marcela.  I love that movie SO much, and it just seems to get better every time I see it.  :)  Super tired after, so just went back upstairs, messed around online a bit, and now it's time for bed.  Slaapwel!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Day 81

Woensdag, 26 Oktober 2011

Woke up, and wasn't completely tired.  Whoo!  At school, I first had my listening class, though today we "performed" versions of blues songs we wrote (well, my group wrote it as I was gone last week :P).  I, of course, did terribly because I suck at singing, but the one guys group was HILAROUS and totally made my day.  Someone got a video, so I'll have to link to it if she puts it online.  :)

Went to Latin next, and of course I was like 25 minutes late because the listening class went long AND they were working in the market in such a way that blocked off my normal route AND I'm usually like 10 minutes late on Wednesdays anyway.  Got to class right after a test, oh darn.  :P  Understanding more and more of the Dutch words used, so hopefully that'll streamline the learning process a bit more.

English next, and I thought I had to give a speech with my partner.  I even stayed up late last night revising it.  Of course, we didn't have to go today.  But it's for the better; now I can actually take some time to care and do it.  Then Science, went to the library.  The teacher didn't have me do anything, so I just read random wikipedia articles.

Marcela was feeling really sick (and I was starting to as well - remember, we share everything), so it was with great reluctance we got on the bus to go to our Dutch lessons in Hoogstraten.  Of course, we didn't know the correct stop, we were just told to get off where there was a lot of buses.

There was no place with a lot of buses.  We ended up staying on until Meerle, which is actually the town of our second family.  We got off because the one person we knew on the bus (a classmate of Marcela's) got off there.  They told us that there weren't any more buses that would come to the stop today.  Oops.  We had her friend call our Dutch tutor, who picked us up, and then showed us where the bus stop was.

Lessons were nice - she was much better at explaining things than the last lady was, and she did a great job of making us repeat it so that it'd stick.  Left her house at 4 because our bus to Lille was at 4:20.

This is where the fun begins.

We walked to the bus stop she showed us, and realized the bus we needed didn't stop there.  We walked to a few more, still didn't see it.  We finally just found a bus that would bring us back to Turnhout, so we hopped on that, even though it took us like 40 minutes to get to Hoogstraten via that bus.  But, lo and behold, the first stop the bus went to had a sign for the bus we needed to go to Lille!  Hooray!

That was at 4:16.  The bus we needed didn't show up.  So, we got off the Turnhout bus for nothing.  Seeing as it would be at least half an hour for the next Turnhout bus, we decided to walk around and see if we could find any bus stops that had a bus going near Lille, so we could just get on that.  Of course, there was nothing. But whatever, there was a bus to Turnhout at 5.  Or, there should have been - it didn't show up.  Finally the 5:30 bus showed up, but that was a bit of a problem.  See, seeing as how it took us like 40 minutes to get to Hoogstraten, we thought it would take that long to get back to Turnhout.  And, the bus from Turnhout to Lille is at like 6 - I think the next one after that is around 7:30.

So, when I was texting some people, I happened to mention that.  One of my friends graciously offered to pick us up which I of course accepted, but of course, the bus made it back to Turnhout just before 6, so Marcela and I were able to get the bus.  Seriously, every time you make arrangements for something besides the bus, the bus will magically show up on time.  I felt pretty silly about asking for a ride then, so I was frantically texting back telling them not to waste time showing up to get us.  :P

Got home at like 6:30, and of course, at 6:30 I needed to be where the fanfare practices to get fitted for pants for the concert apparel.  Biked home quick to drop off my bag, and went there to get fitted, thinking it would be a fast thing.  Nope.  Got home around 7:30, famished, and proceeded to devour a bunch of food.  That made me even more tired than I was, so I had to lay down for a bit before doing anything else.  Got ready for bed, talked to a few kids online, and now I think it's time to sleep.  Slaapwel!

tl;dr: I hate busses

Day 80

Dinsdag, 25 Oktober 2011

Really don't feel like writing now - I'll update this tomorrow.

And a happy birthday to my very special friend Beede!  I wish I was home to celebrate with you!


Okay, here we go.  Woke up, no rain, but when we left the house it JUST started.  So, luckily, we were close enough to home for me to run back inside to grab my umbrella.  And it just had to be on the day I had tea and packed a lunch, so my backpack was quite a bit heavier than usual.

Choir first period, which actually went okay.  Two periods in the library, which I used to study Latin and read some reddit.  Then Latin, which actually went okay.  I'm starting to understand more in that class, though I still can't participate, because even if I know what the Latin translates into, I don't know how to make a sentence out of it in Dutch.  :P

The acting class next, which was... interesting.  The kids tried to convince the teacher to let me have my own part and act, so the teacher told me to say the first line of that "role".  Of course, I hadn't even sight read it once, so I had no idea what words were coming up or what they meant.  Meaning, I stumbled over a lot of words, and didn't put any expression into the words at all because I didn't know what they meant.  She just said I wouldn't be ready in time, and moved on.  :P

Two more periods in the library (doing some studying and some internetting), and then the acting class again.  This time, the teacher asked me to just say one line from another person's script, and apparently I have a super thick American accent still (understandably).  But, she told me to practice that line and keep the accent, so I guess that means I didn't do completely terrible.

Pretty sure we just went home after that (this is why I write the day of - I have a terrible memory).  Ate, did some homework, and went to fanfare rehearsal.  We played one of my favorite pieces (it's Spanish, and Malaguena is the "closer" of it, so to speak), so that was really fun.  Talked to the people around me quite a bit, which was really fun.  I miss doing that at home - having band everyday, so you can chat and play for like an hour 5 times a week.  That's probably why I'm such good friends with all the band kids - we'd just talk all the time!

Anyway, stayed until a little before midnight again.  They're such a fun group, I don't really care that I'm making the next day way harder for myself.  At home, tried to work on some English (I had to edit my speech), talked to a friend on the facemail, and that's about it.  When I put this post online, the internet was tweaking out, so it said it didn't submit when it really did, thus, this was posted twice.  So sorry about that, anyone that uses a feed reader to read this.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Day 79

Maandag, 24 Oktober 2011

Usual morning.  Had History first, and as it was a test, I got to read more Catch-22.  I'm starting to like that class - try to understand history (which is interesting), but read during the difficult parts.  :P  English next, and we were supposed to do our presentations.  Only one group was ready (hey, I still had props to get, I wasn't ready), and they had a lot of technical difficulties getting their powerpoint to work.  The teacher was obviously frustrated, so she just had me sit in front for 30 minutes and answer questions about the US.  It was pretty nice - none of the questions were difficult.  They made me recite all the states in alphabetical order because I said I could, and then they clapped for me after - pretty funny.

Science, just wrote in my notebook, and watched people get grossed out as she talked about babies and childbirth.  Then German, which I still don't have my book for.  We worked on a dialogue we have to give next class, which was fairly simple.  We honestly just had to copy the book, but change a few details.

Lunched with Santi and Marcela, talked about possibly going to Spain together to see some of Santi's family. I think that would be a total blast - those two are like my best friends here.  Had a period in the library, and then music theory, both of which I really didn't do much besides goof around.  It's funny - I seem to talk to my classmates more during music theory than I do outside of class.  Wasn't feeling that good, so Marcela and I were going to go home as she had no class and I only had Latin (which, it turns out, I forgot to pack my homework anyway), but we were dumb and didn't realize the bus that comes at 3:10 only comes on Thursdays and Fridays.  After texting some people to find out that yes, we were reading the sign correctly, we went to get a bite to eat before the next bus (an hour later).  I finally got to eat a Kinder Surprise - you know, the chocolate that's illegal in the US (and they specifically ask you about when you're coming back from Canada).  It was delicious!  And the toy inside was really cute - it's a hippo I named Mr. Smiley.  :)

Both of us were really tired when we got home, so we basically ate, and went upstairs.  I worked on some Latin and talked to some kids on facebook from my home district, so that was nice.  We're all trying to get in touch now, so when we do the rebound camp we can already know each other.  Found out that my ticket home is non-refundable, and it has to be used within a year of my ticket coming here.  So, if I want to stay until the 18th of August like I've been planning, I'd have to buy a completely new ticket, and let the other one go to waste.  :/  Hopefully it doesn't cost terribly much - I was really excited with the possibility of staying.

Anyway, I should probably rest up for my big day of sitting in the library tomorrow.  :P

Slaapwel!  (Or, as they say in Danish "god nat og sov godt")

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Day 78

Zondag, 23 Oktober 2011

Slept in a bit, had a nice breakfast, then went upstairs to watch some drumcorp videos.  After going to drumline last night, I was in the mood for watching some good shows :P  Talked to some music people online (some from here, some from home), and got to get in a long practice session on trumpet.  No one else was home so I didn't feel awkward playing - usually when people are home, someone is watching something on TV, so I don't want to play loud and disturb them.

Studied a little bit, had lunch, and went for a walk with Patrick and Truut.  It was nice to get outside and get some fresh air, and to talk with them a bit.  When we got home, Marcela was home, so we talked a bit before going out for icecream.  Marcela and I got crepes with our icecream, and it was pretty good, but there was soo much food - I could barely finish.  Home, messed around online a bit, studied a bit more, had dinner, and then back upstairs.  Someone from the drumline sent me the mp3's to the music we played yesterday, so I got a few listens to each of the songs, which is great.  But anyway, it's time for bed.  Slaapwel!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Day 77

Zaterdag, 22 Oktober 2011

So, day 77 is probably going to become synonymous with "the greatest day ever".

Woke up, packed my lunch and homework, and was out the door a little before 10 to bike to the bus stop.  Got a bus to Herentals, and then had to wait like 40 minutes in the bus station there.  Read some Catch-22, so that was great.  Took the train to Antwerpen, had another 30 minute wait which allowed me to eat and stretch my legs a bit, so that was good.

Took the train then to Kortrijk (and studied some Latin on the train!), where two guys from Drumspirit picked me up.  Drove to Dadizele, where Drumspirit practices.  Talked with the unit coordinator guy, then grabbed a set of plates and got to rehearse.  There are 4 other cymbal players (I think only two of them have really any experience), so it was a good pace to learn at.

Rehearsed for two hours, had something to drink (they have a bar in their rehearsal site as well - I think it's a typical Belgian thing), and talked to a guy that I think is the visual tech/helps with cymbals.  Tried to think of some ideas for visuals for the show, which is always fun.  Two more hours of practice, and that was it!  I'm used to doing 4 hours and then having a lunch break, so it felt really weird being done that early.

Talked to some kids in my section a bit more, then got a ride to the train station.  BARELY made my train (I was just going to skip it and take the one at 7:40), but I got there right as the 6:40 train was about to leave.  Whew.  Of course, there was some sort of convention/halloween party or something going on, so the train got FILLED with people in costumes.  Ugh.  Didn't even bother trying to study since I couldn't concentrate.

Got the train in Antwerpen back home, but of course, something was wrong with the tracks so the train was stopped for like 20 minutes.  Finally got home around 9:30, making it almost 12 hours since I left the house.  I also find it pretty funny I had to take a bike, a bus, a train, and a car to get to rehearsal.

Finally had a real meal, got ready for bed, talked to some friends online.  Now, it's time to get some rest so I can look over the drumline music again tomorrow :P  Slaapwel!

Day 76

Vrijdag, 21 Oktober 2011

Got up, went to school.  There was frost on the ground - I had to explain to Marcela what it was.  :)  Studied first period, choir next, then Latin.  Had a test, did some review, and got candy it was the birthday of one of the girls in the class.  I love that class~

Back to the school, did a bit of music theory study during music theory, lunched with Santi and Marcela outside (!!!) so we could go to the library in the second half of lunch.  :P  Since all of the web filters are off during lunch, I watched the recaps for the first two World Series games, a bunch of other clips from the games, and then searched up winter drumlines I may want to audition for next year.  Yep, I'm a band nerd.

Another music class, but I basically just talked to classmates during it.  Then art history, and as my class had a test, I just got to read some Catch-22.  Legit.  At home, did some music stuff and studying, ate, and then skyped with Marcela.  Yeah, that's our idea of a fun Friday night - skyping each other.

You can see my back behind her~

After we had our fun with that, I went out with a few people from the fanfare to a little music quiz thing.  I don't really know how to explain it; I guess like really intense bar trivia about a certain subject?  There were questions on what a song was, who the artist was, or looking at pictures to guess who the artist is or what CD art it is.  Stuff like that.  It was actually really fun, even though I didn't know like anything.  :P  If only it had been on ska and country music - I would have nailed it!

Anyway, got home at like midnight from that, so I just had some cereal quick, and now it's time for bed!  Drumline tomorrow; super excited, and actually a bit nervous.  I shouldn't be, considering I'm really, really used to having new directors, but I suppose a bit is normal.  Well, slaapwel!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Day 75!

Donderdag, 20 Oktober 2011

75 days already?  I can see now what people mean when they say time flies on exchange.

Woke up still tired from yesterday - Marcela and I could barely open our eyes.  Barely got to school on time (the bus is getting just a bit later every day it seems).  Had my note learning class for two periods, which was fun like always.  I like seeing how people who have never read music try to understand the new musical terms and symbols.  We each had to sing this little exercise, and I was the only person to get a 10/10 (the teacher reads the persons name and their score to the class - totally weird)!  Still don't like singing in front of people, but that makes me think that my singing in the car back home really helps.

After that, all the music/arts students went to a little concert in the school auditorium, put on by these 5 performers.  It was all Baroque style music, which was awesome!  I have a lot of that style of music on my iPod, but I've never heard it performed live before, so it was great.  There was an oboe player, and it made me realize it's the first time I've heard an oboe IRL since I've been here.  Wow.  Really makes me miss band class back home.

Lunched with Santi and Marcela, talked about our plans for the fall vacation (it's a full week off of school, and they don't leave for the London trip until the Thursday!).  Worked on the pop song the next period - it was the first time we (the lyric writers) got to listen to the music that the other guys had composed.  Tried to fit things together, changed a few things around.  It actually sounds pretty decent.  Jazz playing next, which just made me miss jazz band back home.  I miss having legit music - we're just playing small, easy pieces right now and soloing.  Eh.

Jazz theory next, which was relaxing as per usual standards.  Bussed home with Marcela - there weren't any seats left when she got to the bus, so she sat on my lap for the majority of the ride.  :P  Got home, studied a bit, had dinner, more studying.  Ugh.  Talked to a kid from my district back home that's in Germany - we're gonna try to meet up!  Hopefully we can make it work.

Welp, I'm tired of studying, so I'm just going to go to bed.  Slaapwel!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Day 74

Woensdag, Oktober 19 2011

Bit of a warning for those with bad/slow internet connections - quite a few pictures in this post.

Got to sleep in a bit today, as there was Rotary event, so that was AMAZING.  For once it wasn't dark out when I woke up.  :)

Got ready for the day, and then Patrick drove Marcela and I to Tielen!  (Tielen is like our place - it's hard to explain).  So, naturally, we got pictures there whilst waiting for the train.


Met up with Santi, Jenna, and Emi (district chairperson for the Dutch half of the district) on the train.  Made small talk until the other exchange students joined us.  Switched trains, and then had a spectacular ride to Ieper.  Once there, we had an hour to just walk around, eat, and hang out before we went to the museum.  So, I went off with Santi, Jenna and Marcela to find some fries.  After like 20 minutes of searching we finally found one, and then met up with the rest of the exchange students (just the Dutch speaking kids, so there was only like 20 of us).  Messed around, got some icecream, and tried to make a pyramid.

The pyramid kind of fell down.

Then, we finally went in the Flanders Fields museum.  It was amazing, to say the least.  Really great approach, very interactive, and you learn so much.  Probably one of the best museums I've ever been to.  After spending about an hour in there, we walked to Menin Gate, which was also really breathtaking.  It's just a huge gate, with thousands upon thousands of names etched into it, commemorating those who died in the War.

Lots of names

Then, we took a walk behind the gate to a little grave yard, which was also really beautiful.  Actually, the entire city was just beautiful, and the museum and all of the memorials were really well done.  I'm thinking about going back on November 11th with some other exchange students, and staying late enough to watch the Last Post ceremony.

After that though, we had to go home.  On the way to Brussels, we were just bonding and laughing and making fools of ourselves the entire time.  Before I came here, I never understood how people who only meet a few times a year could be the best friends you ever have, but after being an exchange student, I totally understand it.  We're all just best friends, and I know we always will be.

And Allen will always be best friends with that sandwich

In Brussels we had to all scramble onto new trains because the one we were going to stay on was going to be delayed like 40 minutes.  There were a lot of police, and two guys that were getting roughed up by them, so I assume something bad happened.  So, our goodbyes were cut short, and Marcela, Santi, Jenna, Emi and I had to run to catch our new train.  Spent the ride just messing around and playing cards, so it was pretty fun.

My train buddies - Santi (in the back), Jenna (in the front), and Marcela
Jenna got off with Marcela and I in Herentals to catch another train back home.  We hung out with her for a bit, but Patrick picked us up pretty soon after we got there.  Home, ate, emailed some people, put pictures online, and now it's about time for bed.  Slaapwel!

Day 73

Dinsdag, 18 Oktober 2011


Okay, I'll make it quick so I can get to the good news.  :P

Choir first period, which was okay, considering it was with the younger kids.  Two library periods, where I studied Latin, and then Latin.  Took a test, did some translated; all good.  Back to school, had the acting class.  Since I still can't speak Dutch, I can't get a "main" part, but my teacher put me as one of several background actors for this one guy's part, so that was fun.

Then, as we only had library periods, Marcela and I went to Antwerpen!  Studied on the bus, which was good, since it was like over an hour.  Got icecream (delicious), shopped a bit (got a legit new overshirt), and went home.  Marcela and I ate quick, and then I went on facebook.  Had some friend requests from people from the drumline, so I thought that was pretty cool - I would want to meet all of them, even if I couldn't join.

And, whilst creeping on facebook, I see Drumspirit (the drumline I really wanted to join here) post a status update saying "Welcome to American Kelsey Lysford".  WHAT?!  I practically jumped out of my chair.  Marcela seemed so confused; I was just so excited I couldn't speak.  And seeing them post it on facebook must have meant that it went well when they talked to Truut, meaning I could really join!  Truut wasn't home, so I couldn't ask her (and Patrick didn't know), but OHMYGOD, I could join!

Then, went to fanfare rehearsal, which was amazing as always.  After rehearsal, I of course had to stay for drinks as someone rang the bell.  :P  I started talking to one of the euphonium players about jazz music, just led to just talking.  Around 11 or 1130 there were only like 6 of us left, but we kept talking until midnight.  And I have to say, it was probably one of the funnest nights I've had so far - they talked mainly in Dutch, but translate some things, and then asked some questions in English or asked things about America.  It was great - though I am really glad I have a field trip with Rotary tomorrow, so I can wake up later.

So yeah, just to recap: basically no real class today, icecream and Antwerpen, bought an awesome overshirt, GOT IN DRUMLINE, played some fun music, and got to spend two hours talking to some amazing people.  Yep, I'd say today was probably my best day so far.

Anyway, I need some sleep, so slaapwel!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Day 72

Mandag, 17 Oktober 2011

Woke up incredibly tired - didn't sleep much since I was thinking about drumline.  I just want a definite answer!  If it's yes, great, and if it's no, that sucks but I can still go watch the shows - I just want an answer so I can stop worrying!

Anyway, the bus was a little late again today, but not terribly bad.  But, on the walk from the bus stop to the school, there is a lot of construction going on (revamping the market place).  Of course, today they were working on the stretch of road between where all the kids from the bus come and the school.  There was only enough room for like one person to be going at once, so there was just a WAVE of kids trying to push through to get to school.

By the time we got there, we were over 5 minutes late, and had to turn in our agendas (I guess that's the usual protocol for being late - they put a mark in there saying that you were late, dunno why).  Ugh.  The pile of agendas was just huge, understandably.

Tried to wake myself up during history (didn't work) and English (didn't work).  During science, the teacher was gone again, so my classmates did another test, meaning we were in the cafeteria at different tables for the entire period.  Pretty much fell asleep then.  Then German, which was pretty hard.  I honestly only remember a few things from my German class (aka, the verb for "eat" and the verb for "sleep").  Yeah, I know I took the first year of it twice, but that was like two years ago, and my German class was SO BAD the community college didn't even offer German II because none of us were good enough to take it.  But, the teacher apparently expects me to be at the level of the class (it's second level), so that pretty much sucks.

Marcela and I bought lunch at the school, considering we were too tired to make something this morning.  Ate with Santi, and then went with him to the library to help him finish his presentation on Colombia.  Aaaand while we were there, we got youtube and facebook to work!  Without any sort of proxies or anything!  We were so excited - finally, a way to stave off boredom on those days when we're in the library for 4 hours!

Seeing as how I had a library period next, I went straight to facebook to see if anyone was online to chat to keep me awake.  Started talking to my dad, and then like 3 minutes later, they put the web filter back up, and no more facebook.  :(  My dad thought it was pretty funny that I "got busted".  Oh, a note on the school web filters - it blocks anything gaming related (video game news, or websites that have any sort of connection to games), and all streaming media.  AKA, I can't read any gaming news (and I've found some in Dutch!), or watch baseball replays (the internet here at home is super slow).  Plus, with the world series coming up, I think the only way I can watch is via the internet, but as the internet at home is capped, I can't watch it.  So no World Series for me this year.  :(  I'll just have to download the PTI and Baseball Today podcasts and hope they play clips from the games.

Music theory was after my library time (were I tried to keep awake by studying Latin, and looking over the audition materials for cymbal players from my drumline back home).  Super tired by then, so I continued my quest to become left handed (and also drew a mustache on my hand, just because).  Then Latin, which was pretty okay.  Turned in my test which I'm pretty sure I failed (I didn't cheat at all - just translated the questions and tried to answer), but it's all good because I saw a lot of kids in my class failed.  Then again, they're like 12, so that shouldn't make me feel better.  :P

Bussed home with Marcela, had dinner, skyped with my family a bit, looked over a lot of music that I have (didn't play at all because they were watching TV downstairs, like usual), went on reddit - usual night activities.  Just had my nightly cereal with Marcela, which means it's time for bed.  Slaapwel!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Day 71

Zondag, 16 Oktober 2011

Whew, long day.

Took a good hour or so to wake up and get ready, which was great.  Then, I had to go help out with the fanfare - we were putting on a lunch/dinner thing, I assume to raise money.  I got to wash dishes with a few other people, considering I can't talk in Dutch, and thus, can't serve the food.  It was really fun though - we stole some of the leftover food, sprayed people with the hose (we were using the hose to clean the dishes), and just messed around.  It got really busy, but it was actually entertaining enough that I didn't care.  Oh, and everyone kept asking if I was cold, considering I was just wearing a tanktop and no sweater (but I had on the rubber apron to keep dry).  The sun was just hot enough to keep me warm, so it was amazing.

Patrick, Truut, Siemen and Marcela came for lunch around 230, so I went to eat with them.  I was super nervous, considering we were planning on leaving for the drumline thing at 3, and they were taking FOREVER.  I could barely eat, I was so anxious.  We finally left at 320, BARELY got there before the drumline I want to join played (we got there at lik 415, and they played at 430).  It was amazing!  The beginning of the show was a little different than drumlines I'm used to, but then it got sooo amazing and intense.  There were also little "marching bands" that played - they had little cones to mark the yard lines, marching band uniforms - everything!  I was so surprised, I didn't know they did that here, especially since they don't have American football fields.  But it was fun to see - it really made me miss marching band and drumline.  I haven't been in a marching activity since April when drumline ended, and around this time of year I'd just be finishing up my marching band season.  :(

Anyway, Marcela and I went to find the unit coordinator for the drumline, as I had told him I'd talk to him today.  We found the line, but I was too scared to go up to talk to them.  :P  I waited until there was one guy away from everyone else, talked to him, and then waited with him because the unit coordinator wasn't there.  Some of the kids in the line started talking to me, so that was really fun.  They all seem super nice and laidback.

Finally met the coordinator guy, but as they were going back inside for a retreat (awards, basically), we decided to talk later.  Had some tea with Marcela, met up with the host family again, watched the retreat, and then talked to the coordinator.  I think Truut was trying to tell him that I really shouldn't join (I could only understand parts of the conversation, but that's the gist I got), and he was trying to convince her I should be allowed to.  One of the other techs (I think) came over and talked to Marcela and I as we were standing off to the side while the coordinator and Truut talked.  We had talked for a minute earlier, mainly him just helping me find the coordinator.  But I then found out he marched Rhythm X and Bluecoats, so I was internally freaking out, because that's just amazing!  It was a lot of fun to talk to him.

Anyway, it basically ended that Truut said she had to talk to Wim about it, and that we should try to tell the coordinator by the middle of the week (since there's rehearsal on Saturday).  SO NERVOUS.

We went to a swim park after, which was pretty cool.  There was a little lazy river thing that went outside and had a bunch of little rapids, so that was a lot of fun.  But, Marcela and I spent most of our time in the hot tub. :P

Finally got home around 11, dead tired.  Just had something to eat (I hadn't really eaten since the fanfare, and I only had soup there because I was so nervous :P), but now it's time for bed.  Slaapwel!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Day 70

Zaterdag, 15 Oktober 2011

Wow, 70 days already?  Unreal (tournament three :P)

Got to wake up late, which was amazing.  Basically spent the morning talking with Marcela, reading things online, and getting ready for the day.  Then, around 3, we (Marcela, Siemen, Patrick, Truut and I) went to Truut's parents birthday party.  It was okay - no one really talked to us, so Marcela and I had to find ways to stay awake.  We ended up just looking through a dictionary to find funny words, texting people, and other stupid things like that.

Around 830, we finally went home.  Patrick and Siemen wanted to watch a movie, so I (naturally) suggested 300.  Of course, I was too lazy to stand up and put it in the DVD player (hey, don't judge, I was super comfortable and basically asleep), so Siemen decided to choose something that was on TV.

He chose Twilight.  Yes, I'm serious.  And then he went to bed at the first commercial break.  Marcela and I just made fun of it the whole time, and actually had some pretty funny conversations.  Never thought I'd have fun watching that movie, but I did.  Anyway, I'm super nervous for tomorrow (aka, hopefully finding out about drumline), so I'm going to try and sleep now.  Slaapwel!

Day 69

Vrijdag, 14 Oktober 2011

Totally good day today.  First off, the bus was like 20 minutes late, meaning we were late to school.  Score!  Not only that, but it was just beautiful outside today, and I managed to have my iPod shuffle onto this song, which gave a great mood to the morning.   Had a period in the library, then choir.  We went to sing in the basement of the church that's in the campus, which was pretty cool.  The acoustics down there weren't as good as the Great Hall at Bethel though.  :P  Got to pick an apple from a tree, then had Latin.  I struggled through the test, but then the teacher let me bring it home to translate it, so she was only testing me on my Latin knowledge, and not my Dutch.  :)

Made my Latin flashcards in music theory, then lunched with Santi and Marcela.  I'm really glad I have the two of them to hang out with - it's so much fun!  Music composition, which meant I worked on my flashcards more, and then aesthetics, which was just awesome because the teacher is so passionate.

After school, went out to a pub with Marcela and some of her classmates and their friends.  It was pretty fun - they bought a bunch of food for us to try, and we overall just really nice.  Oh, and they played this Cake song on the radio, which made the place infinitely better (especially since I had just listened to it a few hours before).  We left for the bus stop, but as Marcela and I were still hungry, we stopped and got Bicky Burgers. Bicky Burgers are apparently really famous in Belgium, seeing as ordering one is the first thing my classmates taught me how to say in Dutch.

And it actually tastes pretty good

On the bus ride home, Marcela and I decided to have a sleepover with each other.  :P  Got home, messed around online, and were going to watch a movie before I fell asleep.  Oops.  We were planning on going to Siemen's birthday party around midnight and staying for only a few hours (Patrick was going from midnight to 3), but apparently Patrick called Siemen, and realized we didn't need to go help like originally planned, so we just stayed home.

Yep, pretty good day.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Day 68

Donderdag, 13 Oktober 2011

It was colder in my room than outside when I woke up.  Not fun.  School was fairly simple today.  Note learning for two periods, aka, the class I know what's going on.  Library for the next two periods because my class had some sort of presentation to attend.  Lunched with Santi, Marcela, and some of her classmates.  Then the class where we're writing the pop song (got another verse written), the jazz class (played backup while the teacher soloed; pretty boring actually), and then the class that I thought was jazz theory.  We just listened to this one song, and they had a discussion about it, which I couldn't understand.

Then, Santi and his host sister brought me out to buy a new phone (finally!).  Got one for 19 euros, so that was nice.  Home, had dinner, studied some Latin and talked to a few kids online, had cereal with Marcela, listened to some music, and now it's time for bed.  Slaapwel!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Day 67

Woensdag, 12 Oktober 2011

Pretty easy day.  Listening first period, but we got to actually play instruments instead of just listening.  Played an easy blues song - the teacher put me on drumset, so that was funny.  Latin, back for English (just brainstorming for a presentation), and then Science.  Except, the teacher wasn't there for Science, and they needed to take a test, so we stood around the classroom until a teacher showed up like 20 minutes later.  Pretty boring.

Home, ate with Marcela and Patrick, and then we watched "Australia".  I had seen it once before, but I totally forgot how fake some parts of the movie looked.  Except, I kept remembering "Man From Snowy River", so I kept getting confused - I was always like, "wasn't there a scene that was supposed to be here?"

After that, had dinner with Truut, and then we went iceskating (we meaning Siemen, Patrick, Marcela and I - Truut had class).  It was actually pretty fun.  I hadn't been skating in a long while (neither had Marcela), so we just kept going around together.  Time to talk, so that was nice.  It was super warm though - Truut told us we needed a jacket and gloves and a hat because it was cold, but I was almost sweating, and that was just with a light fall jacket that was unzipped.  Even Marcela was warm, so that's pretty unheard of.

Home, got ready for bed, had cereal with Marcela, and now it's time to sleep - homework can wait.  :P  Slaapwel!

Day 66

Dinsdag, 11 Oktober 2011

Woke up late again - Marcela's alarm didn't go off, so Truut knocked on our doors around 7, wondering what was going on.  Oops.  >.>  We made it to the bus stop in time, so no biggie.  But, I hate being woken up suddenly in the mornings - I get even more cranky than usual, and I'm just tired all day.

Every. Single. Day.
But, Tuesdays are easy for me at school.  Choir with the younger class first, then two periods in the library, then Latin.  We took a test in Latin today, and I think I may have passed (as opposed to how I've barely been filling in two out of 15 answers for my last tests)!  So that was cool.  Unfortunately, I think we have a big test on Friday, and it's on everything we've done so far.  Meaning, everything I still haven't caught up on.  Eep.

Back to the school, had expression, aka sit around and watch my classmates act.  Then two more periods in the library (and there may or may not have been some sleeping going on), and expression again.  By the end of the day, I was so tired I got an energy drink so I could stay awake for fanfare rehearsal.  Of course, after not having my usual constant stream of Mountain Dew for the past two months, it affected me way more than I'm used to (then again, it could also be because I hadn't eaten for like 5 hours by then, and even so my lunch was fairly small since I was rushed this morning).

At home, Patrick, Truut and Siemen were gone until like 730, so Marcela and I just got to talk and hang out, so that was really nice.  Rehearsal was really fun too, except for the fact I was still hyped up and couldn't completely concentrate.  We played some new songs - an arrangement of Tequila (which made me reminisce about pep band), and a Robert W. Smith piece (I hate Robert W. Smith - played too much of his stuff), which I got first on because the usual first trumpets weren't there.  It was great, but after not working my high notes for two months I got tired out really quick.

Stayed after and talked to a lot of people, so that was really fun.  Honestly, Tuesday nights are probably the highlight of my week.  Plus, that means Wednesday is the next day (aka, half day at school).  Also, speaking of highlights, some good news from today:

- I may be able to join drumline!!!  Wim called Truut, and from what I understood, he said I could join, but he'd prefer if I went to rotary events if they conflict.  Plus, I think most rotary events are closer to the drumline anyway since there are more students on the French side, so I could probably work out a deal to go to part, and then go to drumline since it'd be closer.  But, I'll cross that bridge if I come to it.  I'll probably know on Sunday - Truut wants to talk the the drumline director/unit coordinator, but I hope he can convince her.  :)

Nelson Cruz hit the first game-ending grand slam in postseason history.  I just think that that's utterly amazing.  Made my day when I read it.

Well, that's about it.  Slaapwel!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Day 65

Mandag, 10 Oktober 2011

Woke up like 20 minutes later than usual this morning, so I didn't get my usual internet time.  Meaning, I didn't get to check if I got an email from the drumline guy, so I was freaking out all morning at the bus stop (spoiler - I didn't get one D: )  History, English, and Science first, didn't really do much in any of those.  German next (switched into it, not really by my doing), and it was the second year of it.  Apparently the teacher expects me to remember my German, even though it's been two years since I had it.  :/

Lunched with Santi, then spent a period in the library doing Latin, and then music theory.  My goal for that class is to learn how to write with my left hand, because that's about the only productive thing I can do in that class.  Spent a good portion of it laughing with my classmates, so that was fun.  Then, off to Latin.  Fun stuff.

Bussed home with Marcela, ate, studied a bit, and messed around online.  Talked to a few people, but now it's time for bed.  Hopefully when I check my email tomorrow I'll have responses to all of the emails I've sent out recently.  :P  Anyway, slaapwel!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Day 64

Zondag, 9 Oktober 2011

Got up around 11 (yay, almost sleeping in!), had breakfast with Marcela, Patrick, and Truut.  Then, Marcela and I decided to watch "Anastasia" in Dutch, which was really fun, except for the fact some of our English subtitles got cut off so we were really confused.  :P  Then, slowly got ready for the fanfare contest today (slowly meaning I'd do something, go on reddit, do something else, do some Latin, etc).

Went to the contest, which was really fun.  It was a super serious event, where they had to check off everyone in the group to make sure only the correct amount of people (and instruments) were there.  And to get checked off you needed to show the guy your passport (which in Belgium is just the size of a driver's license, and the same material).  But, since I was subbing in for one of the bugel players (since I hadn't joined when they signed up and told them everyone's names back in May), I was freaking out.  Luckily I got checked off without a hitch, but it was nerve wracking standing there and watching everyone I knew who spoke English exit the room.

The concert went just fine, except for the fact there was some over-hyping going on.  That seems to happen every time there's any type of important concert or show for like any group I've been in.  Ugh.  But we still sounded pretty good, and it was fun, so that's what matters.  Marcela, Patrick, and Truut came to watch, so that was cool.  Sat and talked with Marcela when the other groups were playing - there were some absolutely amazing pieces.

Went home right after as I wasn't feeling the greatest (this is too common of a theme...), had some cereal with Marcela.  We've been having cereal together almost every night, and we usually bring our laptops downstairs with us as well.  It's probably the best part of my day.  :3

Aww yeah

Skyped with mama for a bit, and FINALLY got an email back from Wim (I've been refreshing my email so much the past few days).  He wants to know a few more details, but he said (translated), "Presumably, this is okay".  YAY!  That makes my chances of joining up to like 20%!  If I can convince him, then all I have to do is convince Truut.  And I'm going to see their show next Sunday (they're doing a final performance of their show from last seasonn), so I can meet them in person!  I'm so stoked.

Anyway, I'm frakkin' tired right now, so it's time for sleep.  Slaapwel!

Also, I want to say "Congratulations" to my friend Bob and his new wife Tara.  They just got married today, and I just wanted to take a minute to say how excited I am for them, and that I hope they have a great life together.  Best wishes for the future you two!

Day 63

Zaterdag, 8 Oktober 2011

There was a huge rotary event in Namen today, so, of course, that meant getting up fairly early.  When Patrick was driving Marcela and I to the train, I asked about joining drumline, so I had to wait all day for an answer (spoiler:  He told me to talk to Truut, and then she told me to email Wim).  Met Santiago on the train in Herentals, where it was delayed for like half an hour.  Ugh.

Finally got to Antwerpen, found a train going to Brussels.  When I was practicing my Latin flashcards on the train (yes, I was being responsible for once), I started talking to the person across from me - turns out they play jazz piano!  I thought that was pretty cool - it seems like I always randomly meet musicians (seriously; I was at a friend's grad party in the States, and one of the adults I started talking to was a roommate to a drumline instructor that I knew about).

Anyway, then went from Brussels to Namen.  We were going to meet Jenna there, but her train was cancelled so she was late aaaaand her phone died.  Slick.  The rotary sent someone to pick us up from the station since we were so late (we got there at like 1130 or so, and we were supposed to be there at 10; the first delay made us keep getting later).  The rotary people found Marcela, Santi and I, and we found Jenna just in the nick of time.  Luckily we just missed the explaining of rules, which they quickly recapped for us.  Then, went on a boat ride for like 2 or 3 hours.  Like, all of us on one boat.  So, needless to say, it was crowded.

After the boat ride, we all got off, chatted, took pictures, and then went back.  It was a lot of fun - I got to talk to all of my best friends.  I have a lot of best friends - I usually just find out one thing about them, and then declare them my best friend, and there's nothing they can do about it (you can do the one handed clap?  BEST FRIENDS.  we have the same birthday?  BEST FRIENDS)  It's fun, and it gives me an excuse to talk to people.  Oh, and totally took another picture with the gals I'm going to be playing D&D with.  We're so legit.

Aww yeahh

Took the train back to Brussels with quite a few other exchange students (and 3 of my best friends were there!).  Then, we all gradually went our separate ways until it was just Jenna, Marcela, Santi and I stuck in Antwerpen.  Santi bought a Monster, but it ended up giving him two so I got one of them.  =D  Then we all kind of shared our drinks and food, so that was cool.  It's not like any of us would get sick again - I was the the one who got both Marcela and Santi sick, so we all had either just taken or were still taking meds for the same sickness.

Patrick picked Marcela and I up from Herentals, he told me they hadn't decided for drumline yet (total sad face), and then we watched the third Pirates movie.  That was quite a lot of fun - I like watching movies, especially when it's one I want to see, and when Marcela and I are just talking for most of it.  Now it's almost like 2am, so I should probably go to sleep.  Slaapwel!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Day 62

Vrijdag, 7 Oktober 2011

Today was a good day.  Not only is it my two month mark here in Belgium (wow, time flies!), I also got an email back from the director of the drumline here saying I can join (so all I need to do is ask Truut now :/), aaaand I just saw that the Yankees got beat in game 5!  They're out!

Anyway, when I went to school it was raining pretty bad, and I found the hard way that my RCR jacket is not terribly waterproof.  Oops.  In the library first period, so I got to dry off there.  Choir, and we sang two different versions of "Happy Birthday", which was just really odd.  Walked to Latin (wasn't raining anymore!), had class, made it only to the last 20 minutes of one of the music class, which was nice, since I don't do anything.  Lunched with Santiago again (Marcela was home sick again), tried to figure out Latin during composition, and then aesthetics, which was just me looking at the pictures again.

Home, ate, chatted with Marcela, studied a bit of Latin, read some dinasaur comics.  Messaged a bunch of people (including sending another email to the drumline director) trying to figure out the best way to ask Truut if I can join drumline.  I think I have a solid plan of attack now - all I need to do is find a good time to ask.  I really hope I can join, because I've really hyped this up (seriously, it's all I've been thinking about, EVEN WHEN I SLEEP).  Anyway, I should probably get to sleep, considering it's a long Rotary day tomorrow.  :/


Thursday, October 6, 2011

Day 61

Donderdag, 6 Oktober 2011

Well, I was almost late for the bus as I was talking to a good friend on skype this morning, so that was a great way to start the day.  :P  School, had two periods of note learning.  I really like the fact I can understand that class, even if it is a little easy for me.  I took a test in class, and I only needed the teacher to translate one of the questions, so I think that's some progress.

Had a period in the library, in which I tried to understand declining nouns in Latin.  So confusing.  Latin is quite difficult, I have to say.  Then math, and the teacher just gave me a book about numbers to read (in English!), so that's what I have to do in class now - read books about math.  Sounds good to me.  I may have my brother send me a few other ones, considering I got like 60 pages into this book already.

Lunched with Santiago (Marcela was home sick), so that was fun.  Creative music next, and we worked on the lyrics for the pop song again.  I could never become a songwriter.  Ever.  Supposed to have two jazz classes next, but the teacher was sick.  The first period I spent messing around on cymbals in a music room with the other jazz kids, so that was fun.  Then, as it was 6th period, we were allowed to go home, so I got to go home early.  I almost missed my bus because I totally forgot about my trumpet when I left (since we didn't play), so I was halfway to the bus stop when I realized, and had to run back.  Made it just in time for my bus, so that's nice.

Home, went online for a bit before dinner.  Ate, talked with the host family about school and what not, and basically fell asleep on Marcela's shoulder.  Promptly went to take a nap after that.  Had Marcela wake up around 9 so I could attempt to do something productive today (ie: figure out Latin), but I'm just exhausted so I'm going back to bed right now.  Slaapwel.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Day 60

Woensdag, 5 Oktober 2011

Finally convinced Marcela to yell at kids at the bus stop in Portuguese.  It was awesome.  :)  School, eh.  Listening first, which was fun.  Doing a unit on jazz/blues, so I didn't even need to pay attention; I could just guess the right answer right away.  Then ran to my Latin class.  Turns out the class had a medical exam or something yesterday, whatever.  Worked in small groups, aka, the two other girls did the work and I copied them because I didn't know what was going on.  I felt so weird copying off of 12 year olds.  :P

Back to school for English, more Shakespeare.  Had to read another sonnet aloud.  I hate reading out loud, especially when it's something that I haven't practiced.  Science next, which was probably the longest 50 minutes of my life.  Ended up just whispering to the kid next to me about video games and trumpets, so that was okay.

Marcela, Santiago and I were planning on going to Antwerpen to buy stuff (and icecream), but Marcela was feeling really sick still so we went home.  Had lunch, then slept for a bit.  Talked to a few people online, and then talked with some Rotarians that came to visit Marcela and I.  After that, more food (I was about to burst), and then talked to some people online again, as I had some serious conversations going.  Ended up talking to a guy from the drumline here (Drumspirit, aka, the reason why I chose Belgium) that I became facebook friends with randomly a week or two ago.  Talked about the line, and possible ways for me to get to rehearsal.  It's about 2 hours by car, which to me isn't bad, but to Truut, it's forever away.

Anyway, I emailed the director asking about joining and possible ways to get to rehearsal (I'm hoping I could carpool/go on the train with someone).  I know I shouldn't, but I'm getting excited that I could maybe possibly join the line.  I mean, this is why I came here.  I know it's far away, but back home some kids drove like 2 hours for my line, and we were only in our second year.  This line has been around way longer, has a great reputation, and I love their shows.  Can't get better than that.  I just don't want to get my hopes up and then not be able to join - it already sucks enough knowing I can't do RCR (my old line) again this year.  I was in for the first two years of it's existence, and now, nope.  :(

So yeah, I'm just totally freaking out about possibly being able to join, so there's no way I can sleep right now, even though I need it.  Trying to think of ways to ask Truut and Patrick if I could join (if everything works out - not even going to ask unless I've found a way to get to rehearsals and know I can join and all the fees associated).  Send some good vibes this way!

Well, slaapwel I guess.  :P

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Day 59

Dinsdag, 4 Oktober 2011

Marcela had to leave for school early today (field trip), so I had to bus by myself for the first time today.  It was the same as usual, albeit a bit lonely.  It's going to be so weird when we go to different houses for our third family.  :/

School was really easy today.  Choir first, I think with the 3rd/4th years.  It's a lot of fun in that class because the kids are younger so a) they don't sing quite as well as my class, and b) they're more obnoxious (in a good way). Then two periods of being in the library as it was classes I don't go to.  Left for Latin, but when I got to the classroom, no one was there.  Waited for about ten minutes, then left.  Ate out (as I forgot to pack a lunch and had free time), then went to the school to go online more.  I swear some of it was productive internet time, or studying, but there was a bit of reddit thrown in there.

After lunch, my class went to the library in  Turnhout for two periods (expression and Dutch).  They were trying to find Dutch plays for their senior project, and since I couldn't help with that I just sat down and read Shakespeare.  Back at the school, went online for one more period, and then went home.  Ate, had a great conversation with Marcela, and then fanfare rehearsal.  I really like playing bugel, but I have to say, I do miss playing trumpet at rehearsals already.

Home, got ready for bed and studied a bit, and now it's time to sleep.  Gotta get ready for Antwerp!  Slaapwel!

Day 58

Maandag, 3 Oktober 2011

Woke up early to finish some things for school.  Then, the printer wouldn't work with my computer, so I had to use Marcela's to print it off.  Great way to start the morning.  :P

School, same as usual.  History, just watched a movie.  English, read some Shakespeare.  The teacher read it in British English, which is what they learn, and then I had to read it in American English to show the difference, so that was pretty fun.  Science, learned about reproductive systems.  Then music analysis, which meant that I tried to understand what he was saying, but ultimatly didn't do anything.

Lunched with all of the other exchange students.  We put up a big world map in a hallway, and put pins where all of us come from.  Pretty cool to see.  Then, library time as it was French.  Just studied some Latin.  Another music theory class, so I just read Catch-22.  Latin next, which was fun.  I'm starting to understand a bit more, though Latin is really difficult, especially after missing the first like month (since I started late and was sick for like a week).

Home, ate, and studied a bit.  The internet was down at the house (which is why this is getting posted late; I'm doing this at school right now).  Wasn't in a terribly great mood, so I cut studying short and just went to bed.  So, yeah.  Fun stuff.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Day 57

Zondag, 2 Oktober 2011

Woke up like 20 minutes before we were leaving for the fairy tale park because I slept through my alarm.  Oops.  Rushed to get ready, and we left for the park (oh yeah, it's in Holland, just had to mention that).  We met Truut's friend and her grandkids at the park, which was actually nice.  The two boys (who were probably around 12 and 9 or so) we fluent in English (as well as 3 other languages: Dutch, French and Swedish), so we could talk just fine.  Plus, since they wanted to go on the rollercoasters as well, we just left Truut, her friend, and the other kid (a young girl) to go look at the fairy tale part of the park.

So, we rode 2 coasters, got utterly lost trying to find Truut to eat lunch, and then rode two more.  It was quite a bit of fun, even though it was like an hour wait for each ride.  After the last one, we had like 10 minutes before we had to meet Truut and her friend, so I bought us icecream.  I told them to keep it on the down low, so when we talked to Truut we could ask for some.  :P  Of course, the youngest kid blabbed, but they bought us icecream anyway.  So, that was nice.

On the drive home I basically slept the entire way, but apparently no one noticed, so that's pretty awesome.  Had some food, and then worked on homework I procrastinated on.  Of course, I still haven't finished some of it, mainly because google translate isn't reliable, so I have no idea exactly what I need to do for it.  Oh well.  Oh, and I got Marcela really sick.  Like, really, really sick.  She's miserable.  I feel really bad.  :(

Welp, I'm exhausted, so slaapwel!

Day 56

Zaterdag, 1 Oktober 2011

Woke up after a great 12 hour rest, played some "Binding of Isaac", did some reading.  All in all a good morning.  Went grocery shopping with Truut, and then helped cook for a bit.  We grilled for dinner (just Patrick, Truut, and I; Marcela was kayaking with rotary and Siemen was working on a tractor), so that was nice.  It made me realize how much I miss bonfires - I was going to like at least one a week the last summer and now I haven't even been around a fire.  So weird.

Anyway, got picked up, and then went to Wortel for a concert (fun fact:  Wortel translates to carrot).  It was really fun - played not only the songs that we had been practicing, but a few more that I assume the group has had for a long time.  I, of course, had only read the other pieces once, but I don't think I messed up too badly.  Mainly just messed up because my contacts got really dry, and I started getting some double vision when I looked at notes.  Not good.  But it was a blast, hearing the other groups was fun too.  Went home, talked with Marcela about our days, and now it's time for bed.

Also, I just noticed how addicted I am to contacts.  Like, I brought with four different colors of contacts.  (Well, technically only three, I had my Mom send me the last color as they hadn't made it into the shop by the time I left).  I just wish I would have known the vest for the fanfare group was green, because then I totally would have gotten green contacts.  I like matching my contacts to my music group outfits (especially drumline - I loved wearing mismatched contacts last season~).

Yeah, time for bed.  Slaapwel!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Day 55

Vrijdag, 30 September 2011

School!  Dutch first, aka library time.  Studied some Latin, and got Catch-22 to read (in English; no way I'd attempt it in Dutch).  Then choir, which was okay I guess.  Latin next, so that was fun.  The kids were apparently worried since I hadn't been in all week.  :P  Aaaand I was invited to join their class for a field trip in November - hopefully I can go!  Meandered back to the school since it was theory next, and I knew I wasn't going to be doing anything.

Lunched with Santi and Marcela and one of Marcela's classmates.  It was pretty fun - we went to a local castle and ate on the grass around the little moat.  Music composition next, and I just read Catch-22 because I really didn't feel like learning, and it had been quite a while since I read a book I could understand.  Art history, where we looked at pictures and I tried to stay awake.

Home, played some "Binding of Isaac", had dinner, and slept.  Went to bed early because Nikki's kids were here and I needed an excuse not to go downstairs.  I was actually only going to nap until they left, but I accidentally slept until morning, thus having this blog be late.

So, since this isn't Friday still, it'd be weird to say 'slaapwel'.  So, uh, see you on the next post?