Eighth Grader Cole Kuster recently returned from a family trip to Australia. He is a competitive swimmer, soccer player and runner. I spoke with him to find out more about his experience in a new country.
Swann: You just got back from Australia. How long were you there?
Kuster: I stayed in Sydney for three months.
Why did you go to Australia?
My dad got to take three months off from his job as the Williams Swim Team coach to travel.
Did you go to school while you were there? What was different about it?
Yeah. I went to school for about two months. I had to wear a uniform, which I had never done before. Also, the students spent a lot more time outside of the classrooms than the students here. And I found that the subjects were a little bit easier than in the United States.
What was your favorite Australian food?
I’m sure they have them here, but my favorite food to eat was a sausage sandwich. They are definitely easier to find in Sydney than in the Berkshires.
What did you do during your free time?
I surfed a lot. I went to the ocean almost every day. On school days, I only got to surf for about three hours. But on the weekends, I typically surfed for four or five hours.
Have you stayed in touch with any people that you met while you were in Australia?
Yes. I have stayed in touch with some of my friends from school.
Did you notice any major culture differences between Australians and Americans?
Not really. Other than the fact that their holidays are different. For example, Halloween is more laid-back in Australia.
Is there anything that you think Americans should learn from Australians?
Australians are really laid-back and chill. They are not very uptight. Americans should learn to be a little more relaxed.
Do you plan on ever going back?
Hopefully. Although the flight is really long, so I probably won’t be going back anytime soon.