Far From Home


by Maegan Hayes, Staff Writer

Flying 4,607 miles across the Atlantic Ocean to start school in a new country can be very scary, but for Talay Marr-Calagan, it was an adventure he was ready to embark on. Marr-Calagan lived in North Rhein Westphalia, a city in Germany all too far from St. Charles, Mo. and had been looking forward to visiting his dad, who lives in St. Charles, and a new city, for quite some time.

“I hadn’t seen my dad for kind of a long time and I missed him a lot, I also really wanted to make new friends here so I could have some fun until I have to leave and go back to Germany in December,” said Marr-Calagan about moving to St. Charles for a semester. It was an exciting experience for  Marr-Calagan, and one that he had been looking forward to since his mother and father had let him know over the summer.

“I’ve made lots of friends here, and have done what I think is like the stereotypical American teenager things to do… My favorite things I’ve done here are Homecoming with my friends and going to football games on Fridays with them, it’s so different from my old school,” said Mar-Calagan on how his high school experience in America is going. Although these things may seem typical for high schoolers here in America, it was very different for Marr-Calagan, and many of these experiences were his first.

“The teachers here are very different, they are very personal with the students and open up about their personal lives more than they do in Germany, but I don’t mind. I like them a lot more here, it makes school more interesting,” said Marr-Calagan on his take about the differences between his learning experience in St. Charles and Germany.

“This school is also a lot easier in my opinion, we learn a lot more at a younger age so in highschool our studies are harder but here you learn stuff that we learned in Germany at a younger age now, but I like it better because I already understand most of the stuff we are learning here,” said Marr-Calagan on how else school here is different and whether or not he likes it. It is widely known to most people that education is apparently more advanced or harder in foreign countries like Marr-Calagan expresses.

“I leave Dec. 25 but am not looking forward to it. I really wish I could live here, I love it. I do miss my mom, but I know how much I will miss my friends here in St. Charles so hopefully I can visit often, that would be cool,” replied Mar-Calagan when asked about how he feels about moving back to Germany. 

The students that Marr-Calagan has made friends with will certainly miss him but hope that he has had an awesome experience in St. Charles. 

“I don’t even want to think about leaving, that can come when the time comes, but right now I just want to have fun!”.