Down Under - My Family Travels

My travel journal is more of a travel story book. The day I was accepted into People to People Student Ambassador program and my parents agreed to let me go, was the day that changed my life. My adventure started at San Francisco International airport at one A.M. in a dreary morning and a hint of excitement filled the air. As I waved good-bye to my mom and dad and set out with a group of kids and teachers, known as People to People, I realized that I was going to have the best time a 12 year old girl could have.

I arrived in Australia at noon. Although the flight was long it was worth it. As I stepped outside after getting my bags the warm breeze fell upon me. The sun was hanging above. My first stop on the agenda was the Steve Erwin Zoo. Unfortunately he was not there, as I expected. As I walked around with my friends and chaperone, I noticed a place where you could pet and feed the kangaroos. We immediately went straight there. At around one o’clock I felt hungry so we went to the food court. The odd thing was that I came face to face with a koala in a eucalyptus tree next to our table. I didn’t expect a wild animal to be almost five feet from human beings. We left the Zoo at around three o’clock and set out for our home-stay in the outback.

As I arrived at the home-stay I couldn’t help noticing the strong smell of fresh air. I spent two days in the outback, learning how to use an Australian Bull whip, throwing a boomerang, and how to relax. We woke up every morning to watch the sunrise and every night we watched the stars dance across the sky.

We left the home-stay, took a bus to the Melbourne dock and took a boat to an island not too far from the Great Barrier Reef. That night was wonderful. My friends and I sang songs on the beach and looked out at the almost never ending sea. The next morning, drowsy from the excitement of the day before, I boarded the boat that would take me to the place of my dreams. Sitting for about a half an hour and watching the water turn a teal color, the captain announced I had arrived. As we stretched our legs and walked off the boat onto the platform, where we got our gear, we jumped into an indescribable experience. I first followed my group leader to an underwater theater to learn of what to and what not to do in the reef. Right after she dismissed us, I darted up the stairs and was fitted for my snorkel gear. When I was paired up with my friend we walked down to another platform right on the water. I didn’t hesitate and jumped right into The Great Barrier Reef! My friend on the other hand took her time. After many words of comfort she joined me in the teal, warm, and clear water. There were so many colors, shapes, and sizes. I can honestly say I never wanted to leave but at the end of the day I got back on the boat to the hotel.

The next morning I awoke to the sound of knocking on my door; my group leader was there and said we should pack up and that we were leaving. I rushed back into the room and woke my roommates to tell them we were leaving. I arrived at the dock with my mouth full of honey and biscuits and boarded the ferry and set off to the airport then onto Sydney. When I arrived I was warmly welcomed to the beautiful city. At about noon we boarded the bus and took a short ride to the Sydney Opera House. Its magnificence was a true fact to its build. As the week came to an end, I was ready to go home, so I waved goodbye to the “Down Under” and came back home.

This trip gave me a new perspective on the world. Travel has been a big part of my life. I hope to go on many more trips in the future. I am so grateful I had that opportunity, and hope to have more.   

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