Lucca in den USA
Having a hobby in the states
You most likely have hobbies before you go to the States for a year. For me that was playing the violin and making music, in particular rapping. When I first had the idea of going on an exchange year, I did not really think about whether my hobbies would change or if I would just keep on doing what I did. I ended up having a mix between the two options. Sadly, for all classical music lovers out there, I did not play my violin for an entire year. Luckily though, I bought a cheap microphone off Amazon to be able to still make songs in the US. And I sure did. I actually ended up having an entire 12 song mixtape after my exchange year. The year really did inspire me a lot. But enough of my music and back to hobbies. Sports-wise I really wanted to try something new. Before going abroad, I used to play handball for many years (a sport only few people in the US have even heard of) and I was a swimmer and lifeguard. For my time in the US I first thought about joining the football team, but I arrived kind of too late for that, so I chose an even more exhausting sport in the wintertime, wrestling. The practice was hard. Three hours every day after school. 1,500 calories burnt during every training. It was really hard, but also an amazing experience. Many of my friends were in the school’s marching band and looking back, I should have joined it, even though I did not play any instruments used in there. I could have just played the cymbals, since you only need a feeling for rhythm for those. I want to encourage everybody to do something during their time on exchange. It’s a year of experimenting. You are free to try whatever you want to try and you will most definitely not regret it. There are so many things, from Cheer, Wrestling, Basketball, cross country, lacrosse to even board game clubs and video clubs. And if you do not like it that much, you can always tell the teacher. Americans are generally way nicer than Germans (in my experience) and they will give you a smile and be happy that you tried. Try to experience as many new things as possible because it is a year of opportunities that will else turn into a year of missed opportunities that you will regret shortly after. Have fun during your exchange year and feel free to do as much as you can to get the whole cultural experience you signed up for.