Yes like I say every time, I’m a little late for an update. 😉
Not my fault I swear! I have lots of homework and chores to do around here!
I haven’t posted since shortly after New Years it looks like. Well not to too much had happened in the month of January but February? Thats a whole different story! There was a week long Holiday in February from the 6th to the 14th. A solid week off school! Not complaining at all thats for sure. My current host family decided so nicely to take me to Switzerland for a little skiing. No big deal right? WRONG. Totally big deal and I will remember skiing there the rest of my life.
It all started with our 8 hour car ride. Not a big deal but when you have siblings thats another story. I’m still not used to the whole sibling thing, but I’m adapting well now and yes I love all my brothers and sisters. Even if they get on my nerves sometimes. All 3 of my families has over 3 children so its actually a perfect experience for me. We got to Switzerland Late Saturday night. We stayed in a Swiss Mountain Chalet. Thing was totally awesome and super cozy. I had a room all to my self. Score!
Siblings, yep!! 😛
The Chalet/Cabin was actually huge. It had 2 floors and a loft that could sleep like 8. so practically 3 floors. Front balcony faces outward to the mountains just across the valley. It has 4 rooms and 5 if you count the loft. 2 full washrooms and 2 1/2 washrooms. Huge entrance way with benches on both sides to accommodate all of us. Upstairs of course was a full kitchen attached to the dinning area and living room with a nice fireplace.
View from the Balcony.
Me rocking up in my room. Go Jays.
The view out side of my room!
The First day of skiing was beautiful. It was nice and sunny all morning but visibility dropped after noon because apparently when you ski in the mountains clouds become a problem. Yep, skiing in the clouds. How freaking awesome! And of course with the clouds there was always snow! All the hills were open and the avalanche warning was low. level 2 of 5. I found it crazy alone that they have to warn us of avalanches the hills are so steep. After the first day I didn’t know how I was gonna last the rest of the week. On Switzerland’s actual ski hills there are cabins where you can bring a picnic and start a fire inside. Totally awesome and I got to play with fire which I haven’t been able to since Canada. I was extremely sore but I pushed through!
They said reach for the clouds, so I went higher.
2000m Ski snack break.
It decided to snow overnight, only 50cm. Only.. I though that was a lot of snow. It was nuts to ski in! Twice as hard to ski in powder than to ski on the groom hills. But why stay on groomed trails right? Why not go where theres avalanches and deep snow. Yea thats a lot more fun. Finally started to get confidence back in my skiing because I haven’t in forever.
Just casually drowning in snow.
Could say I was brrrrr-ly cold.
It snowed again that night, and again the next. Probably 30-50cm each night we were there it snowed real good. So considering theres waist deep snow, I of course got really confident. I think my family now sees the crazy side in me. My brother would suggest stupid ideas, like “hey the back of that cabin is covered in snow, jump off the front of it.” Then I would do it. So yes I got to do what they do in the movies and jump off of a cabin on the Swisse Alps. But when I landed there was so much snow that my skis blew off and I almost got lost in the snow. But I retried a few times and succeeded.
Yep theres a snack cabin with Canada and Belgium just hanging out.
I don’t know if any of you know of the Discovery Channel? Well they show crazy stuff like how they control avalanches. Well I can confirm that this is a real method on control avalanches. I was on the hill as they were doing it to hills just beside us. They take a helicopter and circle the mountains throwing sticks of dynamite out the window. Yep, thats how real frenchmen do it! I told my family thats what they were doing and they didn’t believe me. So they asked ski patrol and him being super chill about it was like yea man they throw dynamite out of the helicopter and after 2 minutes it blows up. I was satisfied to actually be right for once!
It was the second last day, if I remember correctly but at that point there was a level 4 of 5 avalanche warning. Yea you know what that means. More powder and jumps to be hit! I got to slalom in a small forest in fresh untouched snow. Some places there was so much snow that even if the hill was easily over 45 degree angle you would get stuck. Unbelievably fun to play in. Also I miss the snow so much and that was my perfect dose of winter! Kept dreaming about all those mountains I’d play on if I had a nice snowmobile with me! By the end of that day ski patrol started scooting us off the hills. Theres was extreme wind warnings. Only about 100km/h gusts of wind. The snow felt like rocks pelting you face it was unreal to feel the force of nature.
eh! Mountains! Didn’t see ya ther’ buddy. Was ripping around the Canadian flag skiing.
All in all skiing in Switzerland is the most amazing experience ever. By the end of it my everything was sore. I couldn’t really move anymore. Exchange student = what is exercise?
Swisse leaves me speechless. I would definitely recommend to anyone to go skiing in the mountains! Just do it, even if you can ski or snowboard well. Just give’er a try.
Oh how I’ll miss this.
Like any another other great vacation school always rolls up and is like “hey its time to be lame!” Thats okay though because I actually enjoy school. Maybe only because I have like 3 different courses! 😛 Machining, gym, and french. a couple others buy hey I got no math or history or even like english so I’m not complaining. (Low-key I should have english because its really starting to hurt to write english! Can’t even english and can’t fully french so I’m not sure how I’m gonna communicate when I get back!)
Also I just celebrated my birthday over here in Belgium. My first host family arranged a dinner with my second host family and we all ate together. It was actually one of the best things ever. They did this thing where after I blew out the candles they would all take turns saying their favourite “life souvenir” with me. So like best memories with me. I think I almost wanted to cry in happiness. Its all the little things that they said that just mean so much more coming from somebody else and straight form the heart. My first host mom had made a comment but laughed at it. she said “If Nathan asks to go out and you say no, he will go and ask the other parent. Don’t know where he learned that!?” as she turned to my brothers. Okay, okay I may have done it one time! But she laughed over it. So it’s all good! Also little memories like at the beginning of my exchange my little brother decided to lean on me and fall into my lap while eating dinner and I just raised my hands and said “C’est quoi ca?!” Which is like “What is this?!”. My host parents laughed and said “a brother aha”. Just little things I’ve done for them that brought a smile to their face. Definitely a birthday to remember and I’ll never forget!
As of today I didn’t do too much. No thats a lie. I made a shot glass in school. Yep a shot glass. But!! Before you start judging let me show you the process.
This is a little cup that my teacher gave me from his lunch.. There was still stuff in it I have no idea man.
Then I went onto the computer and designed a fully detailed plan of the “mini cup” and did all my measurements. And no thats not my mark 😉
After doing all the measurements and observations that had to be done, I then had to create a program using different codes telling the machine where to carve and what tool to use. Using many codes like G00 G01 G02 G03 G96 G72 M01 M03 M05 etc. and X and Y axes with different speed associated with those codes, you end up with a cup program. Coding is quite easy but easier to mess up do to the similar codes. G00 is rapid movement, G01 is slow, mix that up and the 25,000 euro machine may go boom.
After many look overs and simulations done on the computer with fine tuning a cup starts to appear and before you know it, you have a finished product.
With the planning and measuring and code breaking it was probably a good 3-4 hours of work for the Tournage machine to spit out a cup in 5 minutes! But theres some good accomplishment there! Whens theres no boom and you have a finished product. Thats best kind!
Also if you guys have any questions feel free to ask! Any questions at all just ask! May have to wait a little bit 😉
Talk again soon! (-ish)
Day 184 In Belgium