Kings County snowfalls a new experience for international exchange students

Published on February 16, 2017

International exchange students Tilman Lemke of Germany, left, and Charlie Moon of South Korea are enjoying their first Canadian winter but are tiring of having so much snow to shovel.

CANNING, NS - Some might have snow in their home country but for exchange students in Kings County, the past week has been a whole new experience.


Seventeen-year-old Aldo Agustin Martinez Castro of Chetumal, Mexico, is a Grade 12 student attending Northeast Kings Education Centre in Canning on an exchange program. He said snow is an entirely new experience and he was “pretty excited to see and feel” it. With three significant snowfalls in the past week, there’s now plenty around for him to enjoy.

“But at the beginning I was not able to get out of the house without tons of layers of clothing,” Martinez Castro said. He was somewhat shocked by the 30C difference in temperature between Mexico and Nova Scotia.

In Kings County, four days of school have been cancelled due to snow in the past week. Martinez Castro said he isn’t enjoying this so much, as he’d prefer to get out rather than stay in the house and do nothing. He enjoys hanging out with friends, meeting new people and staying active.

“That is what I like to do the most, so whenever my hosts ask me if I want to shovel the deck I immediately say ‘yes’,” Martinez Castro said.

He isn’t enjoying having his skin dry out and crack from the cold but said he did enjoy his first “snow fight.” This made him happy because he was wishing to do something that he “could only see on Christmas movies” before.

Martinez Castro said he enjoys walking outdoors and admiring the green and white Canadian landscape. He said he had to learn the hard way through plenty of falls that snowboarding and ice-skating weren’t as easy as he first thought. Now he’s anxious to get out and try the activities again.

Sixteen-year-old Tilman Lemke of Berlin, Germany, is attending NKEC on a student exchange program. He said they get snow in Germany but not in the amounts we see in Nova Scotia.

“It’s new, definitely,” Lemke said. “It’s kind of cool but it’s also annoying because you can’t go out and you can’t do anything because of that.”

He said it’s also “exhausting” because of snow shovelling. It was fun at the start but he finds it tiring having to perform the task “day after day after day” every time more falls.

“The first day it was totally fine but then my shoulder hurt more and more,” Lemke said.

He enjoyed a recent experience snowboarding at Martock and said he would really enjoy getting to go sledding with some friends.

Lemke said there is never enough snow in Berlin to cancel school, so this is also a new experience. He enjoyed the first few days off but is now finding it boring since he can’t get out. Lemke had a chance to catch up on some TV shows and to catch up on homework.

Sixteen-year-old Charlie Moon of South Korea is also attending NKEC while in Nova Scotia on an exchange program. Moon, who enjoys going skating, said snow-related school cancellations are a new experience for him. He said they have snow in Korea but usually not to the extent he’s experienced here in the past week.

“I enjoyed the snow,” Moon said. “I shovelled the snow. It was really fun first time, but getting tired.”



International exchange students attending Northeast Kings Education Centre in Canning while in Nova Scotia aren’t used to seeing so much of the white stuff.