Switzerland

By Simon Gygli, Switzerland

Switzerland is a small country in the middle of Europe. I was born there and actually when I’m not in the USA I live there. So I will tell you something about this beautiful country.

In Switzerland, you can do a lot of activities. We don’t have an ocean, but in summer you can swim in our rivers or lakes. Most of the time in the summer we have sun and more than 25 degrees (77 Fahrenheit). If you don’t like to swim, you can go hike in the mountains or rent a bike to visit a city.

Photo by Simon Gygli

In the winter, most of the time the weather is very cold, but the good thing is we have snow. So you can go skiing in the mountains. It’s very fun! If you cannot ski, you can rent a sled and go down the hill.

If you like sports, you can go to see a match of ice hockey or soccer. These are two of the most popular sports in Switzerland. When you go to the stadium, there is usually a full house and it is a great atmosphere.

Photo by Simon Gygli

The specialty food in Switzerland is fondue. For a “fondue” you take a big pan, full it with cheese and cook it. When the cheese is hot, you put the pan on the table. Now everybody can put a piece of bread on his fork and put it in the pan. You can also eat fondue with potatoes.

Cheese Fondue | Rocky Mountain Lodge

Top 3 Recommended Japanese Dishes

By Takumi Osawa, From Japan

I’m going to recommend Japanese food and drink. There are many kinds of Japanese food. I chose the three dishes. You should try to eat and drink it, when you come to Japan.

First, Ramen.

Ramen is very popular in Japan. When you eat ramen in winter, it will make your body warm. Most Japanese people like ramen.

In Japan, there are so many ramen restaurants so that it shouldn’t be very hard to find a ramen you like. In other words, you can try so many types of ramen.

But I think it’s very hard to find a ramen which suits your taste, so I’m going to give you special information. I really recommend “miso-ramen.” “Miso-ramen” is the most popular of many kinds of ramen in Japan. Of course, “Miso-ramen” is my favorite ramen. If you can’t decide which kinds of ramen to eat, you should try to eat “miso- ramen.”

Second, Sushi.

I know you’ve already known “sushi”. “Sushi” is also very popular food in Japan. I can say that Sushi is traditional Japanese food. Sushi has a history of over 1,300 years.

There are many sushi restaurants in all of the world so that you can try to eat sushi easily. I think many people have eaten sushi ever. But original Japanese sushi is different from sushi you’ve eaten it outside of Japan. I can’t explain how different its taste is. But If you try to eat sushi in Japan, you can recognize the difference between original Japanese sushi and sushi you’ve eaten ever.

I’m going to give you special information. I recommend drinking Japanese-sake with sushi. The combination between Japanese-sake and sushi is very good. If you are more than 20 years old, you should try it. But Japanese-sake is very strong alcohol, so be careful not to drink too much.

If you have a chance to come to Japan, you should try to eat sushi and enjoy original Japanese sushi.

Third, Japanese tea.

Japanese tea is a very healthy drink. It helps for your health. Japanese tea is called “ocha” by Japanese people. I want you to remember “ocha” and want to you use “ocha” when you visit Japan.

Japanese tea is loved by most of Japanese people. Japanese tea goes well with many Japanese food. I recommend drinking Japanese tea with sushi. The combination between Japanese sushi and Japanese tea is very good.

There are two types of Japanese tea. One is cold Japanese tea, another is hot Japanese tea. Both of them is very good teste. You should drink cold Japanese tea in hot season. It makes your body cooler. Also, you should drink hot Japanese tea in cold season. It makes your body warm.

You can get a Japanese tea easily at supermarket, convenience store or vending machine in Japan. You should get a Japanese tea when you visit Japan. Enjoy drinking Japanese tea.

Takumi Osawa

November 16, 2020

A2 / B1 English Communication M / W

Discover the world !

by Solène, Belgium

“Discovery consists of looking at the same thing as everyone else and thinking something different.” Albert Szent Gyorgi

Discovering the world and living in the country are a good way to learn about how the country and the people are, but travelling (sometimes alone) is also important in the discovery of the world.

The independent people from Brazil.

Visiting another country is good for our personal growth because some countries are very different from our home countries, so we can see the differences about the other population from ours and we can reflect about ourselves, who we are and what we have. We can also be glad about our chances to be in the other country because it’s not possible for everyone. Sometimes, when we’re thinking about this, we realize that our happiness is made by ourselves and not by the others.

Water lilies from Amazonia.

Doing the traditional activities and celebrations in the country is very enriching. Like here, in America, the famous tradition after Halloween and Christmas eve is Thanksgiving. It’s very popular and important in the USA, so it’s good to be here and share the cultures. The most important think, in Thanksgiving, is to be thankful for what we have and who we are.

The famous Ms Turkey from Carpinteria.

Travelling alone is also a good way to make new friends and be more confident in ourselves. It pushes us to be independent and to fend for ourselves. And being alone can be the moment to think about what we want for our future.

Travelling from Belgium to USA.

Enjoy every moment on your life! You are free to be who you want. Be thankful for what you have. And the most important, you deserve to be happy!

My Favorite Celebration in Switzerland

Leanne Sottas from Switzerland

My favorite celebration in Switzerland is the Benichon because my parents invite their friends our home and we eat together. It’s very a fun day for me. We celebrate it in Fribourg on the 2nd weekend in October. We are celebrating the feast of the harvest and the descent of the herds of the cows.

We dress the cows with flower crowns for to celebrate this party.

For this party, some people wear the traditional costumes. The girls wear the “Dzaquillon” and the boys wear the “Bredzon”.

Traditional costumes for the girls “Dzaquillon”
Traditional costumes for the boys “Bredzon”

We have a special meal for this celebration – Benichon Menu.

We start with the appetizer. We eat a special bread with Benichon Mustard. It is called “cuchaule”. We drink white wines.

After that we have the starter. We eat cabbage soup.

For the main course, we eat ham, sausage, carrots, beans, bacon and potato. My favorite food in this plate is the pear “à botzi”. We cook the pears in a saucepan with red wine, cinnamon, sugar and anise. It’s very tasty !

The pears “à botzi”

For the dessert, we eat meringues with Gruyère double cream. It’s the traditional dessert of Switzerland. If you come to Switzerland, you must try it ! After the meal, when we serve coffee, we often eat traditional homemade biscuits. For example we eat “bricelet”, “pain d’anis.”

Traditional homemade biscuits

After the meal, we all go to the village to continue the party with the other villagers. We can dance, play games, have a drink and listen to traditional music. In the afternoon, there are the parade of cows. It’s a very fun day.

Having the Best Time of Our Lives

By Chloe Duay (Switzerland) & Clara Tempel (Germany)

Since we have been here, we have done some activities that we don’t have in our countries. We are roommates so we do a lot of things together. We want to speak about some of them.

Condor Express Whales Watching
The first activity we did together at Santa Barbara was to see dolphins and whales. We reserved our places with Condor Express Whale Watching company. The activity lasted 4.30 hours. We left the harbor at 9 a.m. and returned at 2.30 p.m. First, we saw seals, then a lot of dolphins and, finally, a big whale. It was the first time that we went on a cruise along the coast. We were amazed and we recommend this activity for the person who wants to see sea animals. Even during the pandemic restrictions, they are able to host a wonderful day out on the water. There was limited capacity on the boat and everyone had to wear the masks so it felt very safe. It was a perfect way to see the Santa Barbara Channel and maybe one day we will go there again.

Horse riding
Our second activity was a horse riding tour. We did this activity with Circle Bar B Stables and we chose the option for the half day.
We had an appointment in the morning at their ranch where we were each assigned a horse. Then they explained to us how to guide the horse. After that, we started our walk quietly following each other. It was also our first time that we went horse riding, but we wanted to try it one time. Throughout the trail, the view was amazing ! We could see the wonderful landscape. We were even able to try the gallop. It was our favorite activity up to now and we really recommend this one. Awesome experience!

Surfing

This was our first time surfing in Santa Barbara. We searched on the Internet for a surfing school because we wanted to do that with some friends. We took a Lyft to Mondos beach. A truck was near the beach with all the stuff we needed for surfing. After we put on the wetsuits, we went down to the beach and the teacher explained to us how to stand up. Then we went into the water. First, it was a little bit complicated to stand up, but then we got used to it and the teacher always helped us. It was amazing and fun. We enjoyed our surfing lesson. 

Hiking

This is a photo from the hiking we did with EF. The taxi driver picked us up at the school and drove us to Saddle Rock Trail. There we went up with Megan and her dog. It was exhausting because it was very hot, but the view was amazing as you can see in the picture. We stayed there to enjoy the view and took pictures. Then we went back and the taxi driver picked us up again and took us back to the school. Normally, it’s hard to reach the trails without a car so it was a nice activity.

FOOTBALL

Juan Andres, Ecuador

Football, also called association football or soccer, is a game in which two teams of 11 players, using any part of their bodies, except their hands and arms, try to maneuver the ball into the opposing team’s goal. Only the goalkeeper is permitted to handle the ball and may do so only within the penalty area surrounding the goal. The team that scores more goals wins.

Ballack, Michael

Football is the world’s most popular ball game in numbers of participants and spectators. Simple in its principal rules and essential equipment, the sport can be played almost anywhere, from official football playing fields (pitches) to gymnasiums, streets, school playgrounds, parks, or beaches. Football’s governing body, the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), estimated that at the turn of the 21st century there were approximately 250 million football players and over 1.3 billion people “interested” in football; in 2010 a combined television audience of more than 26 billion watched football’s premier tournament, the quadrennial month-long World Cup finals.

Torres, Carlos Alberto

ROSE – My Favorite Song

by Himari Ariizumi From Japan

First of all, I’ll introduce the person who created this song. His name is Jae-hung Park ( Korean:박제형), better known as Jae. He is a Korean-American musician, singer, songwriter, composer, and streamer, best known as a vocalist and electric guitarist of South Korean rock band DAY6. He passed the big audition, then he became a member of DAY6. However, he can’t speak Korean very much, so he had to learn Korean while creating new songs before they debuted. They need to create all of their songs by themselves. He personally streams his own songs on YouTube and SoundCloud while he has been working as a member of DAY6. He calls himself “eaJ” when he does personal works.

DAY6's Jae Shares Welcome Update And Expresses Deep Love And Gratitude To  Fans | Soompi
Jae

This song is one of the most popular songs he has created. I like the main chorus lyrics of this song so much that I’ll introduce it.

Don’t you know that nothing’s really ever beautiful

We’re all just broken windows

What you see depends from where you set your eye

I could see my blood on the floor or it might just be a Rose

I was so moved when I listened to the lyrics for the first time. Have you ever looked at any photos or landscape from broken glass? Even if you haven’t done it, you can imagine it. The scenery varies depending on where you look at the broken glass. The same is true of your own life. Look at it from a different perspective. Even if you go through sadness, pain, regret or frustration, you can make it more clear. “Nothing is really ever beautiful.” It’s definitely a sad truth. However, it’s also a lovely thing as you think about it from different perspective. That is what he is saying through this song.

What is essential is invisible to the eyes.”

We can see the sentence at the end of the music video. This is not only a song, but also art. This song is a masterpiece for me.

eaJ on Twitter: "eaJ - Rose Out now! https://t.co/AiWty26rag… "
DAY6's Jae Announces Release Of Blooming New Solo Single "Rose"

He creates many phenomenal songs by himself. I love the lyrics he wrote. These are very delicate and beautiful. Please listen to his songs. Thank you for reading!

ROSE : https://youtu.be/lATuh4bQyYE

eaJ YouTube Channel https://www.youtube.com/eajmusic/

My Hero

By Donghoon (Mike) Koo

His name is Dwight David Howard who play basketball in the NBA.

He is my hero because I started to play basketball and now I like working out because of him.

Howard visited Korea 7 years ago and he visited Korea Times Square and I saw him and his event game.

After that I fell in love with basketball.

When I was in the high school, my high school team advanced to the finals in Seoul(Capital in Korea)

And now I want to be a sport physical therapist.

Howard changed my life!

He is my big hero!

Get Out Of Your Comfort Zone!

By Cam, Switzerland

Getting out of your comfort zone means to do things that you would be normally too scared to do or even to think about doing it.

50 Epic Tips for Getting Outside Your Comfort Zone – Steph Gaudreau

If you are an EF Student, you are either going to live in a new country or maybe you are already there. You are going to learn a new language, but, at the same time, you hope that your journey will be the greatest experience you will ever have.

And for that, you will have to step outside of your comfort zone if you want to enjoy every experience to its fullest. According to my experiences, the greatest moments I have ever had were the ones I was feeling in my most uncomfortable zone.

10 Tips for Stepping Out of Your Comfort Zone and into a More ...

Now that you are in a new country, you have the opportunity to become a better version of yourself, and what I mean by that is to start challenging yourself as much as possible so you will keep growing as a person. I know it may be difficult for some people, especially in the beginning of your stay and I have been there, too, but it may also be your only chance to become adventurous, so don’t waste it.

Being afraid is totally normal, actually fear is an essential part of your development, but it’s only when you stop letting it hold you back and start to overcome it that your life will get more exciting.

Here is some 3 etips that I want share with you and I really encourage you do during your stay :

  1. Speak the language

This is the first step to immerse yourself in a new country. Try to speak the language that you are learning as much as possible even outside of school and try to make new friends who don’t speak the same native language as you. You are able to meet people from all around the world and share to them your culture, experiences and vice versa. Take part to every activities that EF or your city can propose to you so can you can meet new people.

2. Explore

Travelling is to explore and experience new place, people and things. Take advantage of everything your destination can offer to you. Don’t try to plan every seconds and allow yourself to get lost, you’ll be very suprised by what you can found out. Think outside the box, don’t go to the same spot as everyone, to get the same instagram picture. Instead? unusual places.

3. Take risks

Don’t be afraid of new challenge and dare yourself to take risks.

  1. First Week here in SB, I tried every activity that EF Activities offered. Also, going to the beach, bonfire, whatever you heard about. My roommate told me about the different things to do. 
  2. Suggestions that people could also do: try to talk to as many people as you can. Don’t be afraid to speak to people, even though they don’t speak the same native language. This is important because, if you really want to learn English, then you have to immerse yourself in a new life. I came here to be a better version of myself. Most of my really good friends at EF don’t speak French. I have a couple of French speaking friends. My roommate is from France, but I don’t speak French to him. I only spoke English to him. He also speaks in English. You associate specific people with a specific language. It trained my brain.
  3. Everything happens for a reason I think. You just have to trust people that they will help you.
  4. I was completely out of my comfort zone, but it turned out to be one of the best experiences I have ever had. 
  5. This is great opportunity to do things on your own!

Refik Anadol

By: Lorena Pedraza , Colombia.

“The very complex thinking methodology needed in my work would not be possible without the support of technology companies and the visionary minds that are behind them.”

-Refik Anadol

Refik Anadol was born on 1985 in Istanbul,Turkey. Currently his works like professor and researcher in the University of California Los Angeles in the department of Design Media Arts. Some of his Academic achievements are a master of fine arts in Media from UCLA , from the Istanbul Bilgi University a master of fine arts in Visual Communication Design and a bachelors of arts with summa cum laude  in Photography and Video. He is  a media artist, director, designer and spatial thinker , who takes pools of data like a raw material for creates arts but for to filter and select the raw material one of his techniques is  using Artificial Intelligence, specifically machine learning algorithms.

Installation of “Machine Hallucination” by Refik Anadol at Artechhouse.

Usually his site-specific audio / visual performances  are projected on giant screens or projected onto walls or entire buildings because it for him the facades could be canvases, also it is so important that the public rethink in nowadays how all the technology’s shift changes our vision about the  architecture, aesthetics and space; for this reason his works represent the relation between architecture and media arts and society between technology. He is co-founder and design creator of Antilop.

Perfomace in Walt Disney Concert Hall by Refik Anadol

Some of his awards and prizes are UCLA Arts-Architecture Moss Award, Microsoft Research’s Best Vision Award,SEGD (Society of Experimental Graphic Design) Global Design Awards and Google’s Arts and Machine Intelligence Artist Residency Awards and so on. His performances was presented in LA (USA), Montreal( Canada), Istanbul (Turkey) ,Spain, Austria, Australia, etc.

“Clearly AI is a discovery of humanity that has the potential to make communities, or destroy each other.”

-Refik Anadol