I grew up in a suburb in Minneapolis, Minnesota, our high school was one of the largest in the area and we had so many diverse cultures and traditions at our school. However, most of my friends and I had never met someone from a different country.
During my sophomore year of high school a new exchange student from Iceland named Ben came to our school he also came with his older sister. He started to hang out with my same group of friends and eventually we got to know each other a lot better because he was in the same after school activities as me. When my friends and I would hang out with Ben we always had so much fun, he could make almost everyone laugh because of his easy going care free attitude. Whenever Ben meet a new friend every time he would try to convince people that in Iceland there are penguins walking around everywhere and you can play with them and have them as pets, strangely enough he could actually really convince people that this was true.
The more my friends and I got to know Ben and his family the more we enjoyed his company and learning more about Icelandic culture and traditions. Ben was leaving back to Iceland around the same time that his birthday was, so all of us decided to throw him a huge surprise birthday/going away party. We all hid downstairs at the house he was living in and when he came down we threw confetti and sprayed him with silly string. Till this day I can honestly say that’s one of the most fun parties I’ve been to.
Looking back at the time my friends and I spent with Ben I can honestly say that all of our worldviews expanded immensely and all of us really valued the time we got to spend with someone who seemed so different than us at first but once we got to know him we realized that he was just like any other high school kid our age, he enjoyed the same kind of stuff and was happy to hang out with the new friends he was making while being different than us at first but once we got to know him we realized that he was just like any other high school kid our age, he enjoyed the same kind of stuff and was happy to hang out with the new friends he was making while being abroad.
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