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Por: Liisa Maija Kauhanen, alumna finlandesa de 1er semestre

My exchange year started on July 29th, 2018. We landed on Mexico City in the afternoon with nine other exchange students from Finland. We spent three days in Mexico City and after that we all went to our host cities. Another Finnish girl and I came here to Puebla. My host family here is better than I could ever imagine. They are really supportive and helpful. I have to change my family twice so I will have 3 families. First change is maybe after Christmas.

Every exchange student belongs to a Rotary-club. We spend time with our respective clubs and have meetings. I’ve already been twice to meetings and once I needed to do a little presentation about Finland. My club is really nice and there are four other exchange students; one from Netherlands, one from the USA and two from France. All of them are really nice and we hang out together often. Sometimes we go to cinema or to the mall or even hang out at somebody’s house.

All of the exchange student belong to one district. My district holds the states of Puebla, Veracruz and Guerrero. My district went to Veracruz one weekend and it was really nice and fun. We were maybe 100 exchange students on the trip.

Mostly everything has gone smoothly on my exchange so far. School is nice and I already have many friends here. Studying is sometimes really hard because I don’t understand Spanish that much yet, but I will learn, Rotarian's in Finland have told me that it is easy for us Finns to learn Spanish.

Coming here to Mexico was a bit of a shock to me, everything is so different here. This place is actually completely opposite to Finland, the place where I’m staying here if in a big city with over one million people live, the school is also very big. In Finland I live in a farm where we don’t even have the noise of cars going by; the only sounds I hear are birds and cows, my school is also less than half the size than the one here in Puebla.

Even though Mexico is very different to Finland, I like it a lot. I can’t say I don’t miss home , I do, a lot sometimes, but that doesn’t stop me to get to know new people, visit new places and see a totally different culture to my own. I’m really excited about what this year here in Mexico will give me, I hope that when I go back to Finland in June 2019, I’ll be able to speak Spanish and have more courage in my daily life, I also hope that I will have so many good friends that are not just from Mexico, but also from around the world.

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