Alex Kail, 17, said he was excited to head to Germany as part of Rotary Youth Exchange.
“Just the culture. I just want to live and breathe German and be a little German boy,” Kail, a 2016 Farragut High School graduate, said when asked about the aspect of Germany that appealed to him the most.
Kail said he was looking forward to seeing anything that was different from the United States. However, he said he tried not to have too many expectations and was willing to see how the experience goes.
“I’ll just go in without expectations to live it to the fullest,” he said.
Kail will travel to Paderburn, Germany, for one year starting Aug. 18. He said he would attend a gymnasium, which he described as an advanced high school similar to U.S. advanced placement classes.
He gave a presentation about himself and U.S. culture to Rotary Club of Farragut Wednesday, July 27. He said it would be the same presentation he would give in Germany. The presentation included photographs of Kail’s American-style celebrations of Independence Day, Halloween and Christmas.
Kail said he was ready for the trip.
“Maybe it would be better if I spoke more German, but you can only ask for so much,” he said.
His father, Kevin Kail, works for Woodmen Life Insurance. He said Woodland Life Insurance donates American flags and patriot handbooks, which contain the U.S. Constitution, Declaration of Independence and biographies of presidents, to Rotary Youth Exchange participants.
“A little touch of America to take with them wherever they go,” he said.
In his presentation, Kail talked about his family.
“I think that’s really at the core of who I am. The relationships with family are probably the most important thing in the world,” he said.
Kail presented photos of himself in middle and high school. He said he graduated FHS one year early.
“It’s kind of all a blur of online classes and small amounts of sleep, but here I am,” he said.
Kail said the early graduation allows him to avoid coming back to high school after the year abroad.
His presentation also included a slide with various Tennessee icons including Jack Daniels, Dolly Parton, MoonPies and the Great Smoky Mountains.
He said he was introduced to traveling at an early age. At ages five and seven he traveled to Canada and Mexico. However, he said he had not recently traveled to other countries.