I knew February was a shorter month, but I didn’t expect it to go by that quickly! It’s hard to believe that I have already spent six months here in Slovakia and that I only have four more months remaining of my exchange. With that in mind, it’s more important now than ever to make the most of my time. 

This month has been full of dancing, skiing, traveling, and even swimming! At the start of February we had a Rotary ball—live music, long dresses, fancy hors d’oeuvres…From waltzing with Rotarians to tango dancing with Joaquin, and jumping around to Slovak rock with Finn, it was a great night. We got to meet one of Slovakia’s most famous singers, helped sell tickets for a raffle, and by 1AM, were three very tired exchange students. Each of our host families were there, so it was almost like a Rotary exchange family reunion!

It’s crazy how quickly relationships can form when on an exchange, whether those be with host families, classmates, or other exchange students. Since Joaquin, Finn, and I have overlapping host families, we are already like family. My former family is now Joaquin’s current one, Joaquin’s former family is now Finn’s current one, and my current family will be Finn’s future family—not confusing at all! But it definitely makes it a bit hard to talk about that one time we played badminton with Joaquin’s host brother, wait no, Finn’s! In just half of a year, I have gained not only host families, but also a family of exchange students—in Košice and throughout the rest of the Czechoslovak district. After not having seen the Czech inbound exchange students for about five months since our first orientation meeting in September, we all reunited in the High Tatras this month for our Rotary SkiWeek!

SkiWeek gave us the chance to embrace the Slovak winter on the slopes, socialize, and swim, too, despite the below freezing temperature! In Poprad we visited AquaCity, an aqua park with thermal pools, water slides, saunas, and jacuzzis! As excited as I was to ski for a week, it surprised me that after all was said and done, I think the swimming was my favorite part…maybe I’ve been away from the beach for too long? That short evening-break from skiing was definitely needed, considering that after I returned from skiing with Rotary I only had enough time to shower and repack my things before I was back io the road, heading to Austria for a family ski trip in the Alps! 

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