My adventure began with my application at AIFS early 2013. I was about to finish my Abitur (German A-levels)and really wanted to go somewhere far from home.
Filling in the application form and sorting everything out was a long-term process I definitely underestimated. It's a lot of work, but in the end so worth it.
When I finally found my host family I knew it was the one I wanted to live with. I skyped with the mum and instantly knew that I'd get along with her perfectly. We constantly wrote E-Mails and skyped a few times.
I first planned on leaving Germany in October but because my host fam wasn't in need until January I got everything sorted in the meantime and got myself a small job to earn some extra money.
The group of girls AND boys flying over to Oz was relatively big. It was great fun on the flights and in the hostel during our orientation days in Sydney. It was all very well organised and sorted, as well as the help before flying out. Well done, AIFS.
Most of the girls were placed along the east coast and mostly caught a bus or train. Some others who lived further away or like me along the west coast jumped on a plane. All the tickets and timetables were provided by the host family and given to us by AIFS during our stay in Sydney.
I got to Perth on Saturday night and was immediately greeted by my hostmom with a kiss on my cheek, while my hostdad, typically Australian, shook my hand. It was great getting to the house and seeing my new home for the next few months- Perth.
I still remember how it looked like for the first time and probably won't ever forget the excited and slightly anxious feeling. Being so far away from home was going to be difficult. But thankfully my host family and their friends helped me get settled in rather quick.
I looked after two adorable little boys. The youngest one was 4 months old the older one 1.5 years. I absolutely love them, and seeing them growing up was and still is an amazing gift.
My hostmom then told me about a Facebook group for AuPairs in Perth, where everyone is able to chat and meet up and make new friends. That's how I met one of my best friends, who I travelled through Oz, New Zealand (yes I went there) and the Pacific with.
The plan was to stay for 7.5 months and then fly back home and go to university. That never happened...I decided to stay longer Down Under than initially planned and travelled around, made new friends and saw so many different places, uncountable. Spending Christmas at the beach, wearing you bikini and celebrating New Years in Sydney is definitely an experience and so so worth it.
The good thing about 'Straya is that everyone is so open and friendly, that it's easy to find friends.
I had lots of girls I met up with for weekly play dates with the kids or for a couple of beer and a "barbie" at the beach.
My host parents are like an older siblings to me. We get along so well, and are still texting a lot. They're my second family, my second home on the other side of the world.
It's not easy to get yourself settled in a new family and I was very lucky to have such great support.
I wouldn't want to change my experience for anything in the world. I had amazing opportunities, found even better friends and made some of the most unforgettable memories.
Being able to do what I always wanted to do and have the support of my family and the organisation was more than I ever hoped for.