Inès Desruelles is a foreign exchange student from France who explains why some of her friends back home are worried about what she may look like when she returns.
I don’t really remember when I came up with the idea to leave my home in France for a year. As I learned the English language and about American culture, I thought it would be great to become an exchange student.
I had seen so much about the US on television and the movies and heard that Americans eat a lot of fast food. I wondered if it was really going to be that way.
Fortunately, all the Americans I had seen always seem to be very kind. I’ve been here for about 6 months and I know I’ve changed a lot. I am very independent now. I am now learning things that I can’t get from the media or in a textbook back home. Being here, I see that teenagers have a lot of school spirit and support their sport’s teams. In France, my school doesn’t have any clubs or even a mascot.
My friends have their own funny perceptions of America that I’ll need to help them with: They actually wonder if I am eating a lot of fast food and if I’ll come back to France very fat. Sure, I miss my friends and family in France, but I’ll see them soon. They all seem a little jealous and want to hear about me going to a prom, something we don’t have in France.