Let me start of by saying we sincerely love our Jana (pronounced Jenna). She is 14 and her twin, Jane, is staying with another host family as their parents wanted them separated for the trip. When we received her bio Jana told us how much she looked forward to learning American Culture, being outdoors, games, music and was hoping her host family would have a non-dangerous dog. In the language skills section she checked the box indicating her English was at the conversational level, the other choices being basic and fluent. Apparently there wasn't a box for monosyllabic answers.
|Poor Em even the Chinese Students are taller than her :0)|
Pizza was not quite what Jana thought it was going to be. I could tell she didn't like it and explained she didn't have to eat it. Jana was very concerned about wasting her food, however she was pleasantly pleased to discover that the dogs would be sure nothing was wasted. She was very entertained as the two scoffed down her nibbled slice. Through the entire night the only complete sentence we ever heard was "I need to wash my hand"
Saturday we brought Patrick and Meg home from camp where they had been counsellors. Camera ever ready Jana seemed to enjoy the ride. She and Meg seemed to hit it off quickly~thank heavens for that. When the group of other counsellors came over to meet her, poor Jana was a bit overwhelmed. This was my first clue that she truly had no idea what a week at our house was going to be like. We planned a BBQ with some of the Youth from church that evening. Twelve teens eating Hamburgers and Hot Dogs around a table is not the most solemn affair. They all did their best reaching out to her, every time someone asked a question they all stopped talking and looked at her waiting for an answer. Despite the question all they ever got was what we've loving called the" moaning and groaning" followed by yes or so-so.
During the week Jana had English school from 7:45-5:30 every day. The morning was actual classroom time followed by an afternoon activity. I have no clue if she actually enjoyed any of the activities as our questions usually got the "moan and groan" monosyllabic answer. Meg accompanied Jana on three of the activities and came home raving about the fun she had. Leave it to Meg to come off the bus each time laughing with 5 or 6 different Chinese girls. Jana and her sister stayed to themselves no matter what the event was. In fact on the last day Meg had them all speaking spanish as they got off the bus.
Meg is the reason we jumped into this adventure when our friend from church called. She would like to be a foreign exchange student her junior year. With that in mind I have been viewing these 10 days as a learning opportunity. The one major lesson I have learned so far is this....... SHE WILL BE GOING TO AN ENGLISH SPEAKING COUNTRY.
Tune in tomorrow for..... You can take a
The Hecks and their foreign exchange student