I have spent 8 years of my life in boarding houses. So I felt that when I arrived here I had a pretty good understanding of what I was getting myself into. I felt I knew how the process was going to work, what it would be like to live with other boys and basically the year would be adapting to a country and a culture. Instead, it was adapting to a system, a system that was nowhere near what I had experienced in the past. So – there were the little things I had to get used to, like The Pep Rallies, which I love and had a lot of fun at, but will always remain incredibly messed up in my mind, or the whole new boy culture, the black tie fashion statement, which is still a little strange to me. The going to class on Saturday, the almost intense student teacher relationships you guys have here, the list goes on. I also had to get used to the whole American Patriotism, we are the best in the world, “Can you smell that…yeah that’s right, that’s the sweet smell of freedom.” But in reality the biggest change I had to adapt to was this honour code and this brotherhood that Woodberry hold with such high prestige.
As I said above, I had spent 8 years of my life living with a bunch of boys arguing about who gets to play the Xbox or PS3 next, but what I had never experienced was the bond and trust and honour that is held with such high regards here. Woodberry is an incredibly special and unique place, but what has really made my year come alive for me has been the characters that I have come across over the last 8 months. I haven’t quite experienced the classic, true American high school experience, but I still have been subjected to more than enough stereotypes of American teenagers. Whether it’s the 6’5 football players, the lacrosse jocks, the gun and fishing enthusiasts, the list goes on. Then there are the endless meal time conversations I have had about the differences between the Great land that is Scotland and the ‘former colony’, as one student put it, America.
Woodberry is a special and unique place, and I feel one cannot truly understand the magic of it until they have sat at one of many desks, or slept on one of the dorms, had numerous servings of chicken tortellini and had to cheer their hearts out at The Game.