French Exchange Q&A

By Hannah Chorley

frenchie exchange_web
Photo of Lebuhn (left) and Danis (right) embracing.

Sammy Lebuhn, Junior

Were you scared to have a French exchange student?

I was a little bit nervous about the language barrier, but I was so excited to have Ambre meet all my friends and to show off Mill Valley to her.

What was it like bringing Ambre to school with you?

Sometimes it was a bit stressful because I had to make sure she was having fun, but I also had to do all my classwork. I think she got VERY bored in my calc class.

What was the biggest cultural difference between you and Ambre?

Well, in France they have like two hours for lunch, but at Tam, we only have forty minutes. I always order food, drive back to Tam, and then eat in the car. At first, Ambre was so confused by this because she expected us to sit down and eat a long lunch together.

Did you build a relationship over the two weeks you had together?

I am counting down the days until I get to go to France and live with her. After she left, it felt so weird not having someone to talk to all the time. It’s weird to think how close we got in just two weeks, but I think having to live together and do basically everything together made us bond really quickly. There was always so much to talk about with Ambre.


Ambre Danis, Senior (Orthez, France)

Were you nervous to come to America?

No way! I was so excited! I have never been to America before; I hadn’t even flown on a plane before this exchange!

What was it like going to American school?

It was confusing at first! There were so many people trying to talk to all the Frenchies and they spoke in really fast English. It was cool to see how the classes are taught differently. At my school, we are already studying a specific field, but at Tam, everyone studies different things still.

What was the weirdest thing about American school/Americans?

How obsessed everyone is with Halloween! It’s not a big deal in France. Sammy took me to the Halloween store and it was crazy how many costumes there were! It was really cool to be able to dress up with all the Frenchies.

What was the most fun thing to do in Marin or San Francisco?

I loved going to San Francisco and getting Boba. I have never eaten that before. The California Academy of Sciences was amazing too. Sunset was so pretty as well. We also got to see Alcatraz, which was kind of creepy! San Francisco is beautiful. I never wanted to leave.