Exchange student revisits Matamata
Thirty years ago a 16- year- old student with a limited English vocabulary sat at the dining room table in Don and Jackie Stanley’s home ready for her first day at Matamata College as a Rotary exchange student. Now Tina Bruger is back from Germany, to pay her former host parents a visit.
And this time she has an added addition – her husband Wolfgang.
‘‘ I really enjoyed it here in Matamata. This is my second time back; I came about 10 years ago when I was touring New Zealand and Australia,’’ she said. ‘‘Now we are here with my husband’s work but I said we can’t come to New Zealand without seeing Don and Jackie, so we took an extra week to come up here.’’
They have visited Wairere Falls, taken a trip to the Coromandel and been back to see Matamata College.
‘‘And it is funny the newspaper is here, I was in the Matamata Chronicle 30 years ago too,’’ Mrs Bruger laughed.
Both couples have found a Rotary exchange is a great way to build international relationships that can last a lifetime.
The Stanleys have been back to Germany to visit the pair and were at their wedding last year.
‘‘ During the time Tina was here, she became a Kiwi and became a part of our family so we have kept in touch and the relationship has stayed as there was such a good rapport,’’ Mr Stanley said.
Now Tina and Wolfgang have met the Stanleys’ grandchildren who all reckon they will be going to Germany soon to visit the couple.
Back to visit: From left, Jackie and Don Stanley with Tina and Wolfgang Bruger.