December 12

I woke up in the morning realizing that it was our last day in Qatar and the final day of our study tour. In the morning, our group had a field trip to the Slavery Museum and the Company House Museum. Both were very educational and taught our group a lot about Qatar's history and how finding oil made them become one of the richest nations in the world.
After the field trip I went home with my host brother and we had dinner with his family. For dinner we ate lamb, chicken and beef kebabs and hummus and bread. After dinner my host and I went to Souq Waqif and bought gifts for my family. Towards the end of the day we got crepes in the Souq and went home to say goodbye to my host family. My host father, my host brother, his friend and I got in the car and left for the airport. When we arrived, we said our goodbyes and departed for the U.S.A.
-James Rodican

December 10

As usual, the day started with a delightfully frantic scramble to get dressed, fed, and in the car. Our whole group convened in front of Middle East International School before cramming onto our bus and heading off on our adventure to Education City. In spite of the close quarters and terrible traffic, most of us were happy for the opportunity to catch up on our sleep. When we arrived to Education City we were ushered into the Qatar branch of Georgetown University.
There we were given a short presentation on their International Business curriculum the school, as well as a short tour around the campus.  We were then whisked off to the Carnegie Mellon Qatar campus where we received similar treatment, learning about the technology- centered curriculum and given a brief tour before visiting the final school of the day, Northwestern Qatar.

There we learned about their approach to teaching journalism and studying communications. After the initial presentation at Northwestern Qatar we wer…

December 11

I started off the day by scrambling to get ready after waking up nearly 30 minutes late. As my host student Yordan and I ran out the door, I grabbed the latte that my host dad had made for me. We hopped into the Uber and headed to the Middle East International School hoping the bus to the day's adventures had not left without us. Luckily enough, we made it on time and began the journey to our first destination, the Museum of Islamic Art. From the outside it was already apparent that this facility was state of the art, just like everything else we have seen so far in Doha. As we entered we were greeted by cheerful museum curators and a cascading spiral staircase that took my breathe away. Past the staircase was a huge window looking out to the water with the best possible view of Doha City Center.
Myself along with MaryAlice and Fatima walked around seeing artifacts such as 1000 year old jewelry, historic rugs, pottery and weapons. We then decided to take a break and grab a bite to…

December 9

December 9th was yet another school day we got to share with our hosts! I got to enjoy the sight of two libraries--the school one, in which my fellow students and I studied in while our hosts went to class, and the Qatar National Library, which a small group of friends and I headed out to visit after school. As a bookworm, this was obviously quite exciting to me; I’d heard glowing praise for the National Library, and it thoroughly lived up to my expectations (and then some!) The drive out to the library was cramped and riddled with traffic, the seven of us all piling into one car for the duration of the drive, backpacks and all. The sight of the library itself, though, made those twenty minutes of awkward travel entirely worth it. The building was sleek, metal and glass and downright beautiful--even more so upon walking in. There were books as far as the eye could see, glossy white floors leading up to perfectly smooth shelves lined with colorful volumes of every genre imaginable--hist…

December 7

To start the day off, my family and I shared a conversation about America at the table. The beginning of my day consisted mostly of staying in the house and relaxing. Around 4 in the afternoon my host and I went out to Souq Waqif. Souq Waqif is Qatar’s oldest market and offers an authentic shopping experience. In the souq one can find many things such as essential oils, traditional clothing, a plethora of spices and many other products. I bought a couple of souvenirs, such as keychains and a water bottle with Qatar’s flag on it. At the souq we watched some interesting dances. One dance included men wearing white clothing and riding fake horses while dancing to Arabic music. After walking around for hours and looking at many cool things… we met up with a couple of other CGS students and their hosts. We walked around for a while together and tried to find a restaurant that would accept a group of twelve. Finally, we found a Turkish restaurant that allowed us to sit on the balcony. Sittin…

December 5

On our first day in Qatar, we landed at Doha airport at 4:50 in the morning. We waited there for a few hours until people from Middle East International School school came to pick us up. When we got to MIS, the hosts were waiting in a conference room with a cake for my birthday. After this, the hosts gave us a tour of the school.
Since we were exhausted, the MIS hosts and CGS students were dismissed early from school. My host and I went home with another host and she showed me around the house. For lunch, we ordered McDonald’s (a little taste of home), and then I took a nap because I was exhausted. After I woke up, she introduced me to her mom, dad, and two siblings. When it came time for dinner, we had a more traditional meal, Shawarma, and Falafel with Tabbouleh, which was delicious. After dinner, my host and I watched our new favorite show, while talking about what we should do and see on the trip.

-Marie Berliet

December 6

I woke up to the sound of my host mother knocking on the door to wake my host sister and I for my first day of school with her. We quickly got ready and made our way to school to meet all the other exchange students and get ready for the long day ahead of us. We all attended classes with our hosts and found ourselves paying attention to all the different teaching styles and the different environments as compared to our classes back in Brien McMahon. The school day ended and we quickly got prepared for our trip to sealine, which is an area in Qatar where one can camp out or scale the dunes while still enjoying the view of the water. The ride to sealine was about an hour and some people decided to talk with their friends while others decided to catch up on some sleep. When we finally arrived at sealine everyone was immediately stunned by the beautiful view that was right in front of us. The host for our campout in the desert showed us the way to where we’d be staying for the rest of the d…