The time of my life in Manurewa

Hi my name is Linda. I'm 16 years old, from Germany, and I've spent the first term of this year at MHS as international student. I guess before I came here my expectations of New Zealand, which is known as the most beautiful country on earth (at least that's what people at home say!), were pretty high. Still, almost every single one of those expectations has been far exceeded! These three months alone, far away from home, have been the best time of my life so far. All these open, kind and loving people, their colourful cultures, and the magnificent landscapes are so different from everything I've known from home and I cannot put into words how much I've grown, experienced, and learnt throughout my time here.

Even though I went to school during the week I had enough time on weekends to explore as much as possible and the diversity which this country has to offer is incredible! All it takes is a 1 hour car ride from the busy big city life in the centre of Auckland, to peaceful bush walks or even hikes in the mountains with stunning views and a swim in the sea at beautiful black or white sand beaches.

After every weekend, I could look forward to going to school, to see my new friends, funny classmates, and teachers, and to attend the type of classes I used to dream of in Germany. My favourite subject amongst all was Indigenous Dance. Not only because dancing in general is one of my hobbies but mostly because I could actually experience and be a part of the Pacific cultures, like Samoa, Tonga and Maori, by learning their indigenous dances and in singing in their native languages.

Now I've only got a few days left and looking back makes me feel sad and happy at the same time since the term has gone by so quickly and I don't want to leave but I also gathered the best and funniest memories, made heaps of new friends and can't wait to take this new, positive mind-set and view of life back with me to Germany! All I know is that I will return as soon as possible, hopefully with my whole family to show them the country that has changed my life.

Linda

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