Thursday, November 24, 2011


I literally forgot it was Thanksgiving.  It wasn't until 5 o'clock and the bus ride home than I realized that everyone back home had a turkey in the oven and was cooking away in preparation to stuff themselves to the point where they have to change pants (in some cases).  My cheese sandwich for lunch suddenly became much less satisfactory.

The closest thing I will have to a Thanksgiving feast is the AFS-organized potluck this saturday, to which I am bringing pies (apple, pumpkin, and pecan.  I told people here that I was making a tarte aux pommes and they all reacted with "ohh un appel pye, c'est ça?").  My host brother was thoroughly unimpressed by my description of the holiday (he's been putting out his shoes for St Nicholas, who apparently leaves gifts for a few weeks before December 6th, and thought that eating was pretty lame in comparison to his new Legos), but hopefully he'll change his mind when he tries some of my pie.

While I didn't have this week off like my friends did in the States, it hasn't been too hard.  I finish early (3:15) on Mondays, so I went out to eat with the two other AFS students at my school.  We got one mitraillette ('mitraillette' literally means machine gun, but in this case is a demi-baguette with meat, french fries, and insane amounts of mayonnaise) between the three of us and had a very messy time trying to eat it.  I mostly picked the fries off the top (I have not yet been brave enough to try to eat one myself, which is apparently something all Belgian exchange students must do), but was still warm and full when I took the bus home.

Despite my trying to tell my gym teacher I didn't play, I went to a volleyball tournament for my school on Tuesday.  In her (translated) words: "you're tall, you'll do fine."  Our team of 6 volleyball players and 3 non-players played five matches of two 15-minute sets (I have no idea how this compares to a standard volleyball game; if anyone knows, feel free to enlighten me) and ended up coming in second.  We felt a little embarrassed because we were the only team who didn't organize some sort of uniform; everyone else was at least wearing the same colors, if not a school T-shirt.  Ah well.

Yesterday, we had Goodbye Part I at the "exchange student bar" for the trimestrial students who have to leave next week (Part II is tomorrow).  I signed several souvenir Belgian (and Liège) flags, had a few last Belgian beers with a few Swiss, Canadian, Kiwi (i.e. New Zealand), Ecuatorian, Australian, and American friends.  (I love being able to say things like that.)

Other than having my French professor be absent (which meant that I got to sleep in two extra hours), I had a relatively normal day.

And so, since I can't be in my usual Thanksgiving setting, I have to say for my Grandpa "Shadrach, Meshach, and abed we go."  Bonne nuit!

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