Howdie Charlotte Wiegand!

The Wrangler sat down with Charlotte Wiegand, a junior at The Ranch who is a foreign exchange student from Germany.

The Wrangler: Where are you from?

Wiegand: I am from Bickenvach, Germany, it’s near Frankfurt.

The Wrangler: Do you have any siblings?

Wiegand: I have one older brother.

The Wrangler: Tell us about your normal school day in Germany.

Wiegand: I wake up at 6:30 and I get ready for school. We all have breakfast together till 7:00. My brother goes to his train at 7:00 and I’m leaving 15 minutes after him on my bike. I ride my bike to my friend’s house where I meet him and we drive to our school. I have different classes each day and my school starts at 8:00 and ends at 1:15 but some days it ends at 3:45 but then we have lunch at school. Normally after 1:00 I ride my bike back home with my friends. My father is at home, he works at home, and he makes lunch for us. Then I do my homework at 4:00, and then my mom and brother come home. Then I watch TV and at 8:00 we have dinner, after that we always watch a movie together and then at about 11:00 or 12:00 I go to bed.

The Wrangler: Before coming to America, what were your expectations? What did you think it would be like?

Wiegand: I thought I would come to a family that does not have this much money, that I would have to ride the bus to school, and that it would be a small school. I expected that I would live in the middle of nowhere, on a farm, because the people of my organization told me “don’t expect to have your dream host”. I thought I would have to work on the farm with the animals and that the nearest town would be about 4 hours away, that’s the view of America from Germany. I expected to have no siblings and that both parents would work and they would come home very late, so then I would have to organize myself every day. I thought I wouldn’t be able to do my hobbies. And I thought I would be placed in the north.

The Wrangler: So you thought this would be terrible?

Wiegand: Kind of, yeah. The expectation, you always have to make low, so that when it’s better you can be happy about it and when you have a high expectations it’s going to be worse than what you said about it.

The Wrangler: That was the expectation about it, but what’s the reality?

Wiegand: The reality is that my family has money, I’m in a good school and I have a best friend as a sister. I have more siblings than I need. I have a wonderful family, they love me and I love them. I have a huge house in a good area where the downtown is nearby. That’s all I can say yet.

The Wrangler: What are some of the big differences between Germany and here, in America?

Wiegand: A big difference is heat, it’s the first thing that you feel. The distance is farther, you always drive with the car, that’s a huge difference for me because I tell my mom when I’m going to my friend’s house and then I get on my bike and ride to them, and here I have to ask.

The Wrangler: Tell us about your host family.

Wiegand: My host family is nice, friendly, helpful, and sometimes a bit crazy, but that’s not boring so it’s good. The kids are sometimes annoying, but I have to get used to it because I never had small kids growing up.

The Wrangler: What do you think of the school?

Wiegand: The school is huge, really huge. My school in Germany was big and we had different buildings for different classes so you had to walk from building to building to building and that takes a while. Here you have a building in front of you and it makes you feel small. You have two gyms inside, an auditorium, you have 6 classrooms in the side hallways that branch off from the main hall and walking from one to another takes a while, and you have so many people in one building. The library is also huge, but it’s confusing that you only have small shelves, normally when you have a library the shelves are up to the ceiling and the ceiling isn’t nearly as tall as the one here.