Waves of heat drain endless pools of energy and perspiration from my frail body. It is because of this, as I continue my stroll through this mundane land of disturbia, that I come to realize I am not meant to live in Arizona. The realization strikes me with such certainty that I nearly double over. Stranded for fifteen rain-lacking years in a land I certainly did not belong in is quite a depressing thought. Even more depressing, though, is the torment of leaving for a short vacation while constantly trying to fathom how I can bring myself to return to this wasteland. Such was the case I found myself in during my trip to the east coast, during one of the best summers of my life.>
I find myself in a land of green; forest green, wood green, shrub green, basically anything but brown. My relief can only be expressed as a tower plummeting off of a cliff edge. I found myself oddly at ease with my surroundings, and seemed to fit right in. The long drive from Philadelphia International Airport into Cape May Court House, New Jersey was to me a vortex into a new and wondrous unknown. The roads were kept tidy and newly paved. Trees crowded the curves and bends. The clouded sky wept moisture onto the windows of my grandparent’s car. Nearly nodding off once more, a jolt of the car told me we had arrived.
Nowhere else I have been have I ever experienced feeling so serene. Whispers slide between trees as they share their secrets, and birds sing songs of joy to the sky. Suddenly remembering the plans for vacation shot a jolt of excitement through my spine. In all the serenity of the east coast, I had forgotten our visit to the wetlands was already scheduled. My dream of becoming a wildlife biologist on the line, I spend most of my time finding ways to further my chances of going to my dream college. Even on vacation, education entwines with fun activities.
My family and I kayak through the wetlands, taking care to notice the abundance of species of gulls and even witnessing the gracefulness of a ray as it glided through the water. In love with my surroundings, we park our kayaks and leap onto one of the swampy surfaces in the middle of the body of water. This work of art by nature transcends the desert habitat I escaped from in so many ways. And then I realize, both of these environments are amazing, unique places with species only capable of thriving in either one. I come to realize that without the gift of traveling so far, I might have never known the beauty of a cooler, moister climate.
Life dramatically changes when one views the less fortunate life of another. Values are realigned and thoughts redirected, all selfishness aside. The same goes for witnessing another place on earth, a place so different from childhood. Traveling opens the mind, as it opened up my mind and my heart to my love for this new land. It Is such a splendid gift that people can freely come and go to new places of their own desire, if and when they choose. Such a gift must be used in pursuit of common good. A valuable blessing, exploring new places is, and must be used to bless another. I plan on bettering habitat communities for the good of the wildlife, as they deserve proper sanction more than people realize.
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