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  • Level: GCSE
  • Subject: Maths
  • Word count: 10687

Three Months in the USA...

Extracts from this document...


Three Months in the USA...


On the very first day at school last year, my first day in GPr actually, M. Prevot told us about the organization of the year, and said that we had to go abroad, in an English speaking country, during the next summer holidays. I didn’t know were to go, but I knew that wherever I could go, I would not be able to afford to stay 2 months abroad without working. So I would probably go where I could find a job. But I also thought that, as it was my last summer holidays, I should try to find an interesting place to go. England was too close, it was still in Europe, I preferred to go to the USA or to Canada. That’s were I started to search. I will explain how I found an opportunity to become a counselor in the USA, what happened before leaving France, what happened at camp and after camp, what I discovered, what I felt… I will describe all this chronologically, because I think  it’s the easiest way to speak about my experience.

II.        WHERE TO GO ?

As I’ve just said, I had no precise idea about where to go at the very beginning. And I wanted to work so I asked my parents and in particular my mother if they had some advice. My mother, through her job, has a lot of contacts in different companies and she told me that she would ask a friend of hers, who traveled a lot between France and United States for his job, because there is actually a subsidiary company over there. He asked me to give him a curriculum vitae, and told me that he would try to find something for me.

...read more.


Then my first day off started. We were allowed to take a 24-hour period off each week. The first day-off was the same for everybody (Saturday 1:00pm to Sunday 1:00pm). Then the first session was only one week long (the kids were staying only for one week) so everybody had to take his day-off on the next week-end. But the next sessions were 2 weeks long, so we could chose one day-off whenever we wanted (as we are two counselors per cabin, there was always one who could stay with the kids) and the second one was necessarily during the week-end between the 2 sessions. Most of the counselors went back home during the week-end because they lived in Buffalo. So it was mostly the international counselors who stayed at camp. It was an occasion for us to do our laundry, check our e-mails and phone home. That’s what I did on this first day-off. But my first laundry at camp was rather epic. I had put my clothes and detergent normally in the washing-machine, and programmed it. It seemed to be ok, but when I came back half an hour later, the laundry was done but no water had arrived. I’ve never understood this problem because I tried again just after and it worked…

1.        First session

The days-off were very short, and it didn’t seem to be really a full day. Sunday noon arrived very fast. All the staff had a meeting before the beginning of each session so that the director and the unit leaders could give their last advice. Then we had to go back to the cabins we had been assigned to. There, with our co-counselor, we had to

decorate it and prepare it for the arrival of the children.

...read more.


I went back to NYC and my plane for Lyon was on the 10th of September. So I had one more day and a night to spend there, my last contact with America. I spent my last night at the Airport. Lorene had done that at the beginning of the summer. She had told me that only the terminal 4 was opened at night, and it was safe enough, even with all my luggage, because there are security guards.

A few hours later, I was back in France, surprised to hear people speaking French around me. It had been so difficult to sleep in the bus that I slept during 18 hours…


That was probably the most tiring, but also the best summer of my life. About the first aim of this trip, I’m sure I learnt a lot about English, and I improved above all my oral comprehension. But I still think I could not say I can speak fluently. It would need a few more months for that.

But I learnt also a lot about cultures, not only the American one, but also many others thanks to all the people I had the opportunity to meet. I took time to travel after camp, and I think I discovered like things that I might not see again…

        Anika didn’t show up either in Los Angeles, or in Miami. But I received an e-mail from her about one week after coming back in France. She had had problems with her luggage, lost it. But she finally found it and she was back in Germany…

...read more.

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