Michal Ďurčík

My cousin went to the United States three years ago. She said it was an awesome experience and she would recommend the experience of being an exchange student to everyone. She also recommended this to me. At first I could not imagine leaving my home, my family and friends for almost a year, but she inspired me so much that I started looking into it. Then I talked to my parents about it and they were totally astonished. They helped me a lot with figuring stuff out.

Everything worked out and the time to leave Slovakia was coming closer. One week before I was supposed to leave I wanted to give it up. But my parents forced me to go and I left Slovakia. I departed from Vienna and landed in New York where the agency I went through had some events and instructions planned for me. So, New York was the first city in the USA that I got to see. The most important sight I saw in New York was the Empire State Building. Later, I left New York and was finally heading to my final destination, Detroit.

I know Detroit is a bankrupt city but it is actually a fun city. I love it! I lived 50 km from Detroit in a small town called Brighton. My host family was great, and I still keep in touch with them. I had four siblings, two brothers and two sisters and a dog-named Gordy. The school I attended was located in Pinckney, a town near the town I lived in. The school was enormous. It had around 4000 students. It also had its own swimming pool, auditorium, football field and a couple of baseball fields.

I didn’t really like the school system in the USA. Every day we had the same classes throughout the whole semester, which was really boring. On the other hand I had a great host family. Due to the sport I participate in, I had to cook for myself, and they allowed me to do so. I worked out in a gym called ´anytime fitness´. The gym was open 24 hours 7 days a week, and I spent most of my free time there. During the winter I also played ice hockey, and I went to many Red Wings matches. In December my family took me to Chicago, my favorite city so far. It was Christmas at that time, and it was really beautiful. Then in the spring I went to Florida with my host Mum and sister, and we visited Disney World. It was so much fun.

One of the most interesting things was our neighbor. She was the daughter of Harry Mohney, who owns the biggest strip club franchise in America. The company is called Déjà Vu. The dude is loaded! He also has a house in Las Vegas, where my host family took me for summer holiday. Las Vegas was a lot of fun with all those lights and casinos. On the sixth and seventh day of this holiday we went to the Grand Canyon and Hoover Dam. It is just crazy how humongous the Grand Canyon is. It seems infinite. At the end of this Las Vegas trip we went to Los Angeles where my dream came true. I got to work out on Venice beach. I also saw Beverly Hills, Santa Monica beach and many famous people, such as Kim Kardashian. When we returned to Detroit I only had a few months before I left the USA.

It was a great experience and I would recommend it to everyone. It brought so much to my life, and I am actually planning on going back during my next summer holiday.

by Michal Ďurčík

Year 2, Issue 1