The Host Family’s Guide to Foreign Students

Ten things to do or say to your teenage foreign student:

     1.  Ask them if it’s their first time away from home – meant kindly but guaranteed to make them feel immediately homesick

     2.  Show them how to use the (broken) shower

     3.  Buy them Nutella to eat for breakfast – regardless of which country they’re from they all eat Nutella

     4.  Ask them if they live in an apartment or a house

     5.  Ask them how far they live from the sea (why?!)

     6.  Ask them how hot it is at home at the moment whilst raising an annoyed eyebrow at the rain cloud outside the window

     7.  Get food products out of the kitchen cupboards, point to them, asking, “Do you have this at home?”

     8.  Try and cook their local/national dish (never a good idea but done as a valiant attempt to make them feel at home)

     9.  Watch a rom-com film thinking that humour transcends the language barrier but forgetting the mild sexual content which makes for an uncomfortable few minutes as everyone squirms on the sofa whilst pretending they’re absolutely fine (see Love Actually and Bridget Jones as good examples)

    10.  And finally – and I don’t do this to be cruel, rather in the vain hope that one day a sophisticated European palate will say “Wow, that’s great” – make them try Marmite.  Having said that, it’s a good idea to have the video camera ready!

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About Kerry Mayo

I have written three novels, I have been published in the Whitstable Women Writers anthology, Place, and had one non-fiction book, Whitstable Through Time published by Amberley. I have also had two short films produced and short stories and serials published in national magazines.
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