My Teen Camp Experience in France

By: Gabriel Sehringer, France ’10

My 16 days in France were, I can honestly say, some of the most rewarding and eye-opening 16 days of my life. We slept in tents, the 8 boys in one tent and the 7 girls in the other, and over the course of those 16 days, the teenagers I was with became like family to me.

I would say the best part of doing the work camp, besides improving my French, was making friends from all over the world and learning about so many different cultures. I now have friends in Belgrade, Serbia, Istanbul, Turkey, Seoul, South Korea, Hong Kong, and Amsterdam, Netherlands, just to name a few. I also befriended our Indian cook, and we had counselors from Czech Republic, Japan, Belgium, France and Turkey.

I learned enough Korean to be able to ask, “Are you hungry?” (Pegopa?). I tried the French dish Lapin à la Moutarde, (Rabbit with mustard) and Japanese cabbage pancakes. I learned how to braid a full-length Indian bracelet in under 2 minutes. I listened to Serbian techno music. I learned a traditional Spanish dance. I learned French slang. I learned a card game from Turkey.

And, most importantly, I learned to communicate in ways I had never thought, I learned how to see things from the point of view of other cultures, and I believe this camp made me a better individual (not to sound clichéd here), as well as it was lots of fun.

I would definitely recommend one of these camps to anybody whose parents will let them go, because they will surprise you (in a good way) and you will want to go on another one.

Trust me, it was awesome.

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