What being in exchange student is all about

The last post was really long, which is why this isn´t part of it.  But this is a funny story that kind of demonstrates what it means to be an exchange student.  These are the kinds of stories we shar with each other every day between classes, but this is by far the most emblematic one I´ve heard yet– it happened to one of my classmates, we´ll call her Casey.

One of the first few days we were here, Casey´s host parents offered her coffee in the morning.  Casey loves coffee, and with lots of sugar, so naturally she accepted.  Grasping her warm mug of deliciousness, Casey reached for the sugar and poured in a generous portion while her host parents were caught up i conversation.  She lifted the steaming cup to her mouth and took a sip.  It was at this moment that she realized she had filled her coffee cup with salt.  It´s an honest mistake that could be made in any country. 

Here is where the fact that we´re abroad thicken the plot.  Casey has just met her family at this point.  She´s way too embarrassed to tell them of her error.  That´s out of the question.  On the other hand, she doesn´t want them to think she doesn´t like coffee and then not make it for her or offer it.  She needs them to offer her coffee in the morning.  Not drinking it, therefore, it out of the question.  So what does she do? Slowly but surely she sips her salty concoction.  Throughout breakfast she appears to be savoring her beverage, taking tiny sips at a time until almost none remains.  And then, when her host parents get up, she darts into the bathroom and pours out the rest.

Now she gets coffee every morning and she knows which is the sugar bowl.


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