Tuesday, May 4, 2010


I am constantly surprised by Kiwis. Its hard to describe the situations I am meaning when they surprise me because the are not always clear cut. But here is one kind of example: my first week of school everyone just stared at me and no one said a single word to even prove that I existed. When I thought that everyone at school were really cold people that were extremely hard to talk to, I showed up next week to find that people I had never even seen before were saying hello to me in the hallways. You definitely can't go by first impressions in this country. Some people that I thought I would never be friends with are people I like most at school now. There are heaps more examples that I have seen but are just hard to describe in typing, but I can honestly say that I am surprised almost everyday by people here, in a good way that is.

One thing that surprised me was how much more legit their Ball is compared to our Prom. This cant account for every Prom across the US but it definitely counts for mine. Prom at my school is considered really lame and no one really goes to it and everyone just looks forward to the after party. The Ball here is completely different. It is seen as one of the biggest nights of their whole time at school. Some people even get there dates up to 6 or 7 months in advance. Ball dancing practice started a couple weeks ago and goes all the way up to when the ball starts 5 weeks from now in June. We have to learn 14 dances! Its ridiculous! It is a very formal affair and all the guys have to wear white gloves and everything. Everyone meets at a friends house before for drinks and then has a rented or borrowed nice car come to pick them up to take them to dinner and then later to the ball. Then comes the ball, which has a lot of hand shaking and rehearsed dances. Then there is an hour between the Ball and After Ball. The After Ball is also very different. Its not like an after party like prom where you go to someone's house for a party but not everyone goes to the same place. Here there is an actual hall booked where everyone from the Ball goes to for a more relaxed atmosphere and dancing. Everyone stays there very late into the night and then taken home by a ride or picked up by parents that volunteer. Everyone is already really excited about it and discussing their plans for the evening.

There are practices for the Ball every Tuesday and Thursday for an hour and a half. We have to learn 14 dances for it! Insane I think. Our first practice was a little bit of an awkward fest I have to say. It is a joint Ball with Southland Boys High School and Southland Girls High school, but I have found that Boys High guys and Girls High girls dont often hang out. The guys at my school usually hang out with the girls at the public coed school Hargest. Anyways, when we were all in the hall getting ready to start it was clear that the guys sit with the guys and same goes with the girls. The lady teaching us to dance did the ever so popular "how bout lets make it really awkward so it won't be so awkward" bit. So she made every guy offer a right hand to a random girl and ask to dance. Not so bad except for the fact that everyone is really bad at dancing. The girls would catch on quicker however and then you would hear shrieks from girls whose feet who got stepped on, guys tripping all over the place, and even the occasional girl stepping inn a small whole at the bottom of someones jeens and getting it caught and then falling all over the place with her foot caught in the guys pants (I was this guy by the way). Really fun ae? Well actually it really was fun and by the time everyone got the dances down everyone got really comfortable with each other and was having a ton of fun.

Another thing that surprised me about Kiwis is how intense they take duck shooting. Everyone talks about it and everyone does it. Well mostly just the guys in the family, but just about every family has a guy doing it. Opening weekend for duck hunting is known to usually just be a piss up for mates so me and Liam were not going to be out there our the first day with my host dad. Duck season had an opeing weekend last weekend and this is what I came to find when me and Liam came out on Sunday:^^^^ pictures above

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