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June 11, 2009, 3:30 a.m., Tampa, Florida 4:00 am we cleared the standby list all the way to Las Vegas, all seven of us. My friend Rebekah tagged along for what was supposed to be the best summer vacation ever. An all expense paid trip to Sin City for my family and my friends, courtesy of my...Tags:
It was a blistering Fourth of July afternoon of 105 degrees. We had recently moved into our new house in Saratoga Springs, Utah, and with no central air, and un-landscaped yard with no trees, and sweat pouring off of us, we decided that paper fans weren't getting it and that we needed to get out of...Tags:
Uncertainty….. Excitement….. Confusion…. Anxiety…..Optimism…. I was flooded with emotion as the Excursion idled into the vacant parking lot. My heart was pounding, and I wasn’t breathing. After a huge gulp of air, I refocused myself and tried to get control over my nerves. The car sat stationary,...Tags:
It was my birthday, I was turning sixteen, and I was excited. I was in the car, on my way to somewhere very special. It was not, however, the DMV, it was the airport, and I was about to fly to Japan. A trip to Japan happens in steps. The first is in the international terminal of Chicago O'Hare. New...Tags:
On May 29, 2008, my family and I got on a plane that would take us to the most magical vacation we had ever been on. My godparents and their daughter joined us, and they helped us organize and plan our trip. We went to Walt Disney World in Florida. When we arrived, a complimentary Disney...Tags:
My muscles burned, and I willed myself to carry on, to take one more step. I counted each stair: thirty-one, thirty-two. As I trudged on, I imagined a tragic war taking over my body: thirty-three, thirty-four. The tendons were bitter over their fellow friends who had been sacrificed to the...Tags:
I should have known the moment I boarded that bus that I was in for a wild ride. Our group’s motto was “DC or Bust”, and after our fifth hour on the road, it seemed like we were closer to busting than to DC. I thumbed through my battered travel guide listlessly, attempting to ignore the sniveling...Tags:
I am sitting in the right bucket seat of our lipstick-red Ford Wind Star minivan. The first seven of the twenty-plus hour trek from Chesapeake to Branson, Missouri have been slightly less than excruciating. My little siblings remain content--- for the moment: the two little ones (affectionately...Tags:
Suburbs of American cities have long been associated with dull strip malls, monotonous houses, and a dearth of unique, fun-filled activities. Few people consider suburban communities to be viable tourist destinations, but Rochester Hills, Michigan is a town that defies this perception. The...Tags:
I suppose it begins 8 hours into our first day there. Stumbling out onto the streets of New York City with only five hours of sleep, we certainly looked the part of clueless tourists—my camera was slung around my neck while the rest of the family bore backpacks the size of their torsos. Our...Tags: