Over the past two weeks that I have been in South Africa, I have done many amazing things. As soon as I met my exchange, Luke, and his mother, I knew that I had made the right choice of where to go. Right away, Luke and I set off on a safari, where I saw many animals, including four of the big five (lion, rhino, elephant, and buffalo). I would only see the last of the big five, the leopard, a week from then. The last couple of days before school, Luke and I built a robot with drills, using the skills that I had learned last year in robotics.
When I started at Stanford Lake College, I made friends immediately. The classes were similar except they had longer days and more classes. Also, in geography class, they study maps and then go on wilderness treks. Living at a boarding school is very different though. I have never woken up for school surrounded by my friends and without my family.
One of the reasons I came to South Africa was to experience something new. So, later in the week, I practiced cricket and on Saturday I watched a cricket game. I prefer to play cricket as the game is quite long, lasting from 10 am to 5 pm, with a lunch break of 15 minutes…probably one of the longest days ever!
As the weekend rolled in, so did time for adventure. On Sunday morning, Luke and I went to a game farm to see and pet the cheetahs. We also finally saw two leopards, the last of the big five. On another zoo trip, I also got to play with baby tigers and baby lions…as if they were household pets! – Jamie Bekins ’17, exchange student at Stanford Lake College, South Africa