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My week in England 2004

By Magdalena Ploch

Sophia and me

In the week from 5th to 12th July a group of 25 nice people from the German school Geschwister-Scholl Gymnasium went on an exchange to England. The only two pupils who went there for the second time were Sophia and me.  

This time it was quite different from the exchange the year before. I had more fun and got along better with Kyra Bartrum, my exchange partner. No, I meant I understood her better than the last time, because last year I also got along with her very well. But this time it was so funny. I was able to also understand more of what foreign people said to me. That was really good. The whole week was a week full of fun.  

On Monday, 5th July, at about 9 pm we arrived at Bury St Edmunds station. This time I found my exchange partner immediately but other pupils who were a year below me were really excited to see their partners for the first time.  

Me and Kyra Bartrum Sophia and her partners

Instantly on the second day, Tuesday 6th July, we went to visit the school of our exchange partners. We visited their 1-4 periods. On this day the 1-4 periods included the lessons French, Maths, English and Chemistry. The lesson at an English school is quite different. The teachers are stricter than here in Germany and sometimes they've got lessons with two or three teachers. It’s different. You have to be really quiet then. In the afternoon we had Sports including a game like rugby. It was really funny…. And HOT!  

After school I went bowling with my exchange partner and some other girls. It was great fun because I cannot bowl!

On Wednesday, 7th July, our exchange partners stayed at school while we, the German pupils, went by bus to the coast. After a short and windy walk along the coast we took a small boat to see seals living on small isles near the coast. There were loads of them. When you were lucky, you could also see them swimming. It was cool. Then after everyone's hair was tousled, we went by bus to another part of the coast: a beautiful beach. Ok, the beach was not so beautiful, but it was good for playing football. 

Some people on a boat Seals and birds on a sandbank

Thursday, 8th July, was the highlight of the week. We went to London. After a two-hour ride we arrived at a parking lot in Central London. Then after sightseeing (Westminster Abbey, Trafalgar Square,  Buckingham Palace and also the National Gallery with beautiful pictures by Raphel and Michelangelo, Leonardo, Goya, Van Gogh and others) we had less than two hours to go shopping in a really big street:  Oxford Street. London has got so many interesting shops, so the two hours were not enough. Especially for Sophia and me. Because of the rain, many people had to buy an umbrella. At about 8 o'clock everybody was excited because of the musical: “The Lion King”. It was really good. It was just beautiful.   

Themseufer Buckingham Palace
Trafalgar Square The Lion King
London Eye Big Ben

Friday, 9th July, was the last day the German people spent together in a group. We went to Cambridge. Cambridge is really famous for its colleges. On our way to Cambridge we first stopped at Ely where Oliver Cromwell lived and visited a museum. 

Oliver Cromwell's study The Kitchen

Oliver Cromwell is one of the most famous people in Britain’s history. He led the nation during the period in which the country was a republic.

In the Civil War Exhibition I could try on different hats from Cromwell's time

We listened to a talk of a woman who knew a lot of his life and we saw his house (The Parlour, the Kitchen, the Portrait Room, the Civil Was Exhibition, The Study, the Haunted Bedroom). 

The Haunted Bedroom Oliver Cromwell

After Oliver’s World we went by bus to the City of Cambridge where we went shopping. But before shopping we visited King's College. It is not only one of the most famous colleges in the world, it is even one of the best ones. This college is a special college for science. That means there are many students who are really good at Maths, Physics or Chemistry…. Many former students of this college have been awarded Nobel Prizes!

King's College King's College

After this long day we were looking towards a family weekend.

On Saturday, 10th July, I went to Norwich with Kyra and other German and English pupils. There is a really big shopping center. But at first we went to the cinema. We saw the movie “Shrek II”. It was that good and really funny. After the movie we went to McDonalds to eat something and then we went shopping. It was cool.  

On the last day in England, Sunday 11th July, I went  to a funfare with my exchange partner and her family. We were watching football. The football games were funny because men played  in dresses. Funny! 

Football

And in one game even my exchange partner and her older sister played football, too. It was a good chance to take some funny photos. There we had a lot of fun but I was nearly frozen, because it was really really COLD! In the evening we watched some movies and I had to pack my suitcase.  

On Monday, 12th July, everybody was sad because we had to return to Germany. It was the time to say “goodbye” to my exchange family and to go to the bus. The journey back was not that long as the year before and all of us had fun!

All in all the exchange was cool and funny, I met new friends and it was one more experience for my life. It was strange, because since the 4th day of the exchange I was even thinking in English!!!

I would really be happy to do this exchange to England one more time!!!