Many people during their lifetime dream to travel all over the world and experience the different lifestyles and cultures from places across the globe; but 42 Ringwood students are doing just that. These students are a part of a performing arts program from Ringwood Secondary College from across the pond in Melbourne, Australia. The first stop on their month long world tour was Berkley Michigan, and surprisingly it was the one and only stop made in the United States. To make these types of trips possible, the programs need to find homes where the students can stay; and my family and I were lucky enough to host one of the students. Even though the students were here for only a short amount of time the host families did everything possible to make them feel at home. Because culture is so different in Australia compared to the United States, it was fun for both host and student to be exposed to trying new things. For instance, they do not have bagels in Australia, so while the Australians were still here it was everyone’s mission to make sure every student had a taste of a bagel. According to many students “they were amazing” and they cannot wait to try other new foods on their travels. All the host families wanted to give their students the true Michigan experience. Many were taken for their first Coney Island,ice skating downtown, sledding, while some were even taken to Costco. I had my first bite of vegemite (yuck) like many other hosts. Our student Laura, became hooked on Boston Coolers and Faygo pop. The students went to their first Hockey game (the Red Wings beat Colorado), the Motown History Museum, Henry Ford Museum, and dinner at Hard Rock Café. They had their first snow ball fight at school and some made their first snowman. To some this was their first experience with snow! Though they are in Canada right now and leaving today for the second leg of their tour in Europe, I know that they are leaving with many new friends, memories, and experiences; and some are already itching to come back. I am sad to see them go but happy at the same time because I know that they are going on a trip of a lifetime. Many host families are hoping to plan a group trip to Australia to visit our new friends. I am thankful to have had this memorable experience and to have made new life long friends. I look forward to visiting my new friends from "down under" one day soon!