You don’t have to travel a thousand miles in order to have a wonderful, life-changing experience. During my eighth grade year, I had the opportunity to fly out with some of my peers to our nation’s capitol, Washington DC, thanks to the Worldstrides Company. The trip took place around the second week of June 2010. This place had so much in store for me, because even though it’s still in the US, it’s almost like another world to someone who’s born and raised in South Los Angeles. I was bound to gaze upon historical and famous monuments, which I though I could only see from the textbook.
I arrived at my destination on a Tuesday, which meant I had a little over 3 days to make the best of the tip before I returned Friday evening. I landed in Baltimore, Maryland, which was a 10-minute drive from the Holliday Inn Hotel that was hosting us in Virginia. Every morning at around 6o’clock the other students and I would take a bus to Washington DC for the day. Each day was an adventure. Some of the places I visited including the White House, Washington Monument, Supreme Courthouse, Jefferson Memorial, and Lincoln Memorial. Never in my like have I imagined that I would be able to set foot and witness the marvelous architecture that has been a part of this nation for hundreds or years.
I also had the chance to visit historical sites not located in DC itself; this includes Union Station and the home of our very first president, George Washington. Union Station was remarkable; it was a source of transportation with its very own shopping center and food court. It also had a high-class and fancy ambiance, I felt like I was in a movie. The only thing missing from my visit at Union Station was actually boarding one of the trains. After the Union Station, I stepped out of the urban city for a bit to visit the vast, and beautiful home of former president George Washington. Located in a rural area, his home had a farm built right in, and the animals varied from sheep to horses. The property was kept it its original style, so I felt as if I time-traveled back to the late 1700s.I was able to tour his home, visit his bedroom, and also pay my respects and his tomb which was located outside in a mausoleum.
This trip has really opened my eyes to how our nation is diverse; I really stepped out of my boundaries. Washington DC and the others landmarks I’ve visited were really something new compared to Los Angeles. The vibe is also different, it wasn’t as vivacious as my hometown, but it was rather more conservative. All the attention is towards the stunning monuments, it’s like the whole town was a museum. Washington DC also had people who act differently that what I’m used to, they’re generally nicer. I remember walking on the sidewalks and having people randomly greet me, which is something I don’t get here in Los Angeles.
My trip to Washington DC was a once in a lifetime learning experience, and I’m highly grateful that I was able to go on it. I have formed memories with my teachers and classmates that would last for years. And I was able to step into a whole other world, without traveling thousands of miles.
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