Abby Fletcher, our outbound student in Austria, recently sent the below to update our club on her experiences:

The month of November was a great one. Filled with lots of laughter, traveling, start of Christmas, and birthdays. In the beginning of November, my family and I went to visit my Host Grandma in Salzburg, where she lives. It was awesome! They don’t have WiFi so we’re always forced to play games, and work with whatever we’ve got. We visited the city, went to lots of different Cathedrals and Castles, and ate lots of good food. On our way back from Salzburg I went to visit one of my friends that lives in Wels. We had a great time, exploring around the city, and I finally got to meet her school friends! At about the middle of November, the Christmas lights in Vienna strted to go up. It is the most beautiful thing. Although there is no snow,, it’s such a magical place to be during Christmas time. My sister took me and some of my friends from school to a Christmas market in the Vienna. They have them all over the place and they are filled with beautiful lights and stands with all kinds of goodies. They say exchange students get extremely homesick around Christmas time, but I really don’t think I will, this place is absolutely incredible this time of year. Three of my friends had birthdays this month. I went back to Wels to celebrate one of them, went into Vienna for coffee for another one, and ate lots of cake at school. My birthday is coming up, December 9, but we are going to a Krampus festival that weekend. So my family and friends and I are celebrating this upcoming weekend. We are going bowling in Vienna, it should be awesome. We had dinner with some family friends on Sunday. The daughter of the family went on an exchange to Australia last year, my sister went on an exchange to New Zealand last year, and I am on my exchange right now. So it was awesome to talk about it with all of them. We had so much to talk about and so much we can all relate to My German is getting so so good. I am able to understand pretty much everything my host family says to me. Also the coolest thing happened with my real family. I FaceTimed with my mom grandma grandpa and aunt and we all spoke German the whole time. Because they all come from Germany. They were so impressed with my German and I was so impressed my German as well. They were so proud of me and it was such an awesome feeling. I am proud of myself! I am so incredibly happy here. I cannot believe I have already been here for four months.