Week 1

A week or so has passed. I’ve survived three-and-a-half days of German school in Spain. The classes change every day, and so instead of a few really fat textbooks, like in my American high-school, I have a bunch of smaller ones. I also don’t have a locker, so I have to drag everything I need there and back again every day.

The first day, I was brought to school by the mother of the boy next door. He has a strange, confusing nose, but we don’t hang around each other much because he doesn’t seem that interesting otherwise. I don’t know what he thinks of me, but he leaves me alone and so we don’t have to deal with any awkwardness.

Since this is a German school (in Spain) pretty much all of the classes are in German. This means that most of the students speak German pretty well, much better than I speak Spanish. This made it easier to communicate with them.

My classmates don’t change for almost all of my classes. This is okay with me, because they seem to be a rather bearable lot of people. They’re mostly boys, and of course many of them are BOYS, in the sense that they don’t seem to have matured much at all. At. All.

The girls in my class are much more quiet, but not excluded at all. Everyone knows everyone else because you pretty much have the same class throughout school life. The boys make jokes with them and everyone is happy and gleeful and yay.

There is one other new student, as far as I know. My knowledge is limited to my class. He’s apparently from Frankfurt, that place where the airport is when I flutter my way over to Germany during my summers. He’s not tall tall, nor short short, nor fat nor skinny. He has blonde hair and a kind of round face and he’s pretty quiet too. But his Spanish is better than mine, unfortunately. Though I kind of doubt either of us understand the Spanish teacher much. Her voice is deep and loud and kind of swallows into itself.

As for friendship opportunities, there are two girls in my class who recognized Natsu and Erza on my backpack and who are also artistic. I thought maayyybbee there would be something for me there, but I haven’t made much progress in the friendship area. With anyone.

Yesterday, Friday, was probably the worst and the best day. It was bad because I ended up getting lost right at the start of the day (why do I need two different Biology classes in different classrooms?) and also because after school I went into the bathrooms and cried for a while. This was because as soon as school was out, everyone dispersed to some place I don’t know. I still had gym sometime after, but I didn’t know where to go or who to ask because everyone was gone and I was alone and I am terrible at socializing and who am I to intrude on their previous friendships, anyway?

Gym ended up saving the day, though. I dried my tears on the weird toilet paper they have here sometimes (it’s like, Kleenex) and sat around waiting for gym to happen. Two other girls from my class eventually found me making paper airplanes out of old homework in the courtyard. They were all frazzled and such because the bell had rung and why wasn’t I changed for gym? Gym ended up being inside.

Gym saved the day because we did circuit training and I did pretty well, I think. Also because we ran for a while after, and it tired me out and got those endorphins pumping through my veins and taking the sadness and putting it aside in the corner with the bowl of ice-cream that nobody else wants. I was happier.

Then I went and tried out a Tae-Kwon-Do class. It was very different from the Tae-Kwon-Do class I took back in the States. No patterns (yet), no play, more physical work. Also, there was no talk about health or safety or don’t run over other people with your cars, because someday the people with badges will come and most likely take your car and make you pay for all your thoughtlessness. No adorable small children to climb up your pants-leg and beg to be dragged across the room. No funny moms to talk to. Also, no white-board to scribble on.

But I like it, I think. It was hot and sweaty and difficult and all very GRR I WANT TO KICK THIS THING. It was great.

I need some rubber bands for my hair though, seeing as I can no longer be mistaken for a boy when I walk around. Unfortunately. That was funny.

I don’t feel like I can completely trust anyone here. At least not yet. There’s nobody here who I would run to and crush in my arms if I needed the hug. Well, anyone except possibly the chief of the Openmind organization, but she’s somewhere in Barcelona with the other students participating in the program. The other students who don’t have parents capable of Spanish, I suppose. But then again, I’ve never really met this lady, but she was very nice over the phone and invited me to have coffee with her sometime. Not that I drink coffee.

My room is narrow and long. One end has my bed in it, which is too short. My feet hang over the edge, and I like to take the thick top blanket and stuff it on the edge because the edge is metal and thin and hurts my feet. It’s not like the nights are that cold here.

The other end of my room has a deskish thing with shelves above it, as well as a shelf next to it. I also have a dresser with more shelves. I wonder if I will ever fill up the shelves.

The apartments here have pools. I do not know if this is normal, but I like it. I like our neighbors pool more, because it’s larger and isn’t in shadow like ours is. Ours is probably a degree or two colder than my neighbors FREEZING water. It’s really nice. Of course, I don’t do actual swimming, because how boring is that? I kind of sea-lion around in the deep end until a small five year old comes and throws leaves into the water for me to fish out. Which is kind of annoying, but then she feeds me sunflower seeds and all is forgiven.

My host mom is really nice. I can’t understand everything she says, though. I sometimes feel as though I can understand most other Spanish people who try to talk to me better. I’m not sure why exactly. Maybe it’s because her voice is sort of quiet, and she mushes her words together a bit sometimes. Kind of like how we American teenagers bang together the short, hard sticks of our English. Whatever it is, it’s frustrating. Maybe it’s also because we talk about complicated things like printers and computers and also about kinds of food.

I can’t listen to Pandora here. I am outraged.

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