A conversation with Christian Bloesl makes you realize he is like every other fifteen year old American out there. He loves baseball, cheeseburgers, girls, and having fun with friends. But when you start asking him questions about his childhood growing up, you realize he is anything but typical. Christian, the son of a Marine, has spent many of his early years stationed all over the world. He spent two years in South Africa and almost three years in Thailand before coming back to Annapolis, MD two years ago.
Christian enjoyed talking about his experiences in Bangkok, Thailand saying, "I liked it there. The community I was in was awesome and learning about different cultures was neat." He also told me certain aspects about living abroad that he wasn't comfortable with. "It was definitely more dangerous over there. The crime is worse there than the United States so you have to be more careful, but it was interesting to see how corrupt some places can be." The 15-year old is obviously mature enough to handle himself overseas, but he is excited to be home. " I am really happy to be back home and back to the culture I am used to." Having a cheeseburger and fries as his first meal back on American soil signified his return to the American lifestyle.
Bloesl loves baseball and coming to the IMG Academy baseball program for the summer was an obvious choice for the young man. What he didn't realize was that coming to IMG would bring him back to his Thailand days. Bloesl, like most other students at the academy, was paired with a roommate upon arrival and Ben Smith was his name. When they met each other, the normal conversations took place about baseball and summer until Bloesl noticed the shirt his new roommate was wearingâInternational School of Bangkok T-shirt.
"I noticed the shirt right away, but it took me a while to process the whole thing. I asked him if he picked up the shirt on a family vacation." That scenario would have been coincidence enough, but the answer was better than that. Ben Smith is a current student at the ISB and is also living over there because of his father's job. "It was weird. We know all the same people, been to all the same places. It is very cool to know someone else in the states that has had the same experiences I have had." The two are great friends now at the academy and enjoy playing baseball and hanging out with each other.
Coming from Thailand to the IMG Academy in Florida, nobody would expect to walk into a room to find someone who can relate to all your past experiences and share the same friends. But that is what happened here by a great stroke of luck. The two share a common bond overseas which have made them friends, but at the base of it all, they share a love for baseball that brings them back to America and to us here at the IMG Academy.