Learning about Canada in Wyoming


Megan McGrail and Olivia Wainwright have become fast friends during a cultural exchange over the summer.


Olivia Wainwright has seen mosquitoes before but not like the mosquitoes in Canada.

Wainwright, who is from Switzerland, is part of an international exchange with Megan McGrail of Wyoming. The 16 year-olds spent three-weeks in each other’s homes, practicing their French and English skills and discovering another culture

For Wainwright, that meant her first ever campfires, s’mores and mosquitoes. Wainwright says there are mosquitoes in Switzerland “but theses ones in Canada are so big,” she says with laugh.

Campfires and mosquitoes are only part of the experience. McGrail has taken Wainwright to see Niagara Falls, the CN Tower and Canada’s Wonderland as part of the trip.

McGrail also got to see a lot of the great places of Switzerland including the Matterhorn.

And McGrail says the experience has helped improved her French. “Olivia’s English is very good, better than my French,” she laughs.  But she says her French improved simply by listening to others speak. “One day while I was in Switzerland I laughed because understood a joke and I was excited ‘Je comprend!’”

And while the international exchange is meant to help with improving language skills, McGrail and Wainwright have become fast friends and vow to keep in touch.