Touched by the world

Brynn Feighery, Assistant Opinions Editor

Oskar Skrzeszewski- 10 Poland

TPT: How long did you live in Poland?

Skrzeszewski: I was born in Poland and I lived there until I was about six. My entire family family lives in Poland, and they come to visit me and my family here in the United States.

TPT: What influenced your family’s decision to move to the United States?

Skrzeszewski: My parents just wanted to start a new life for themselves and for me and my sister, but we still speak Polish at home. When we moved here, my parents started up their own business. They own and run the Polish Market in Vienna.


Mr. Hinton- Africa, China

TPT: What are your experiences living internationally?

Hinton: Actually, my international journey started when I was a little kid and my dad was working with the US Government. For his job, I grew up in countries all over Africa. In order they were Nigeria, Malawi, Tanzania, and finally Ghana by the time I was nine. My family then moved back to the United States for a little while before we moved to Taiwan. I attended high school in Taiwan and I moved back to the US to attend William and Mary for college, where I studied Chinese. The same week I graduated from college, I moved to China to work for six months. Those six months soon turned into eight years, as well as a wife and a child.


Aqsa Khan- 11 Pakistan

TPT: How was Pakistan different from America?
AK: The electricity goes out regularly, it’s a part of life.

TPT: What do you miss about living in Pakistan?
AK: I guess I miss how everyone was of the same culture. Like we were all pakistani and just like almost the whole of US is celebrating Christmas, the whole of Pakistan would be celebrating the same festivals with us like Eid

TPT: Why did you decide to move to America?
AK: Well when we went to Pakistan after a few years we decided to come back but my grandfather got sick and so we stayed to take care of him…And then he passed away and in a few years it was going to be time for me to go to university so there was no reason to stay anymore. So we mostly came back for education.


Mrs. Rollet- Leosotho

TPT: What brought about your international experiences?

Rollet: My father was an architect who specialized in airports, so I was fortunate enough to have lived all over the United States. I was born and raised in Nebraska, attended high school in California, college in Massachusetts, and I even had the chance to live in Hawaii for a year. From there I joined the Peace Corps for three and a half years and returned to Virginia.

TPT:How was living in Lesotho different from living in the United States?

Rollet: While in Lesotho it was my job to work with the agriculture industry and the primary school system to ensure that kids were able to eat lunch while they were at school. As far as differences go, two things really stood out to me. One major difference for me, obviously was the language. Though I learned the language quite well, some days were very draining just trying to focus and hold a conversation for my job. Another difference were the rules established and the social norms in Lesotho. The biggest difference in social norms was the role of women being subservient to men, which was very hard for me to adapt to while I was there. And surprisingly the hardest thing for me was readapting to the way the United States is run when I returned. I expected the difference when leaving the United States, but I was shocked by how hard it really was transitioning back into American culture.