A home away from home – Linda Calder and Bill Wade

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Bill and Linda Calder

Linda and Bill have been providing homestay accommodation for Lexis students for the past two years. In that time they’ve hosted students ranging in age from 16-55 and from countries as diverse as Czech Republic, Japan and Reunion Island.

They always get excellent feedback from our students and I think this is because they really enjoy the process of welcoming students to their family.

I asked Linda to share some of their memorable homestay moments and photos and also to explain what they get out of being a host family.

Toshi

Toshi at the Lighthouse on his first day in Byron

We’ve had so many memorable times with our students. I remember we took Toshi (pictured above) for his first ever snorkel, and I wasn’t sure once we got started… Bill had to put on his fins, and I had to get his mask on, and when we got over the wreck at main beach and he put his face in the water there was this enormous ray right underneath us and I thought he’d swallow half the sea he was so shocked and excited.

priscilla in love

Priscilla, Dayan and Kay

This next picture shows Priscilla from Brazil with Swiss student Kay and our 14 year old son Dayan at an Xmas dinner. These two fell in love after they left our house… I’m pretty sure she is travelling to Switzerland in June/July to visit him.

Kainoa

Kainoa and his mum

 Last year we played host to two lovely boys from Reunion lsland: surf enthusiasts Jean and Kainoa. At the end of their three week stay Kainoa’s family came out and joined them and we still keep in touch with them like we do with many of our students.

Freddies Pics 301

Freddie from Switzerland

hynek

Hynek from Czech Republic

 We’ve also really enjoyed hosting Freddie, Linard and Kevin from Switzerland, Hynek from Czech Republic and Tomoyuki from Japan. Our Maltese dog Harry was so sad to see Hynek go that he kept going into his room and dragging the bathmat out of the bathroom.

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Harry the dog!

 As for us, I’m trying to think about what it is that we enjoy most about having the students and I think it is that because we are Canadian and don’t have any family here in Australia so the students who stay longer term actually become like part of our family. Dayan loves that he has these brothers and sisters from all over the world and he particularly loves it when they are keen to hang out and watch bad movies together.

ribs

Dayan loves to cook and guests love his speciality – Pork Ribs 

Dinner times are great fun because that is when we all share stories about our lives, culture, food, travel experiences and so on. We love to witness the fun that student’s have at school, with the friends they meet, and the active social lives they have in this safe community.  It is a joy to see so many students who enjoy surfing, the beaches and relaxed lifestyle of Byron Bay while they learn to improve their English language skills.

Ultimately it is a privilege to be a positive part of people’s lives when they are visiting Australia often for the first time and we enjoy showing them some of the more special places around the area.

Thanks for sharing Linda, and for providing Lexis students with such a wonderful homestay experience.

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