Less than a week ago, I went on a ten day trip that forever changed my life forever. About a year ago, I never dreamed that I would be standing under the Eiffel tower, watching it twinkle at midnight, or gazing at the multi-colored windows in the Sagrada Familia. I never dreamed that I would fall in love with the people, culture, and art; or never thought that I’d miss that other world so badly when I got back home.
I had signed up at my high school with a group called NETC through the Spanish and French classes my junior year. My former Spanish teacher was the one who had suggested it to me. After waiting a year, we finally boarded the plane. First, we landed in Madrid. When we went to walk around, I didn’t expect the people to be so carefree. It was a sight shocker to see all the buildings with statues of angles and famous, important people, everywhere we went. It was shocking to see all gypsies around each corner putting on either a musical act, or covered all in silver paint, holding their hands out for some spare change.
We went to Picasso’s museum in Barcelona where we saw many of his abstract paintings and the famous Guernica. I was so amazed when I set my eyes on the Sagrada Familia. I loved the artwork and detail inside. I was shocked to see that all the faces of Jesus, and Mary, the three wise kings was each hand carved and beautiful. Each flower trailing up the inside of the wall to the ceiling was perfectly engraved. When I stared at the huge door, covered in the word hope in many different languages, tears stung my eyes. Religion, and God mean a lot to the Spanish people. It was amazing to see how one man’s dream still continued on after his death.
In Paris, we dropped off our things at the Holiday Inn and immediately went to the Notre Dame. I expected it to be bigger, however I was not disappointed. When we went inside, I didn’t expect it to be so dark. The gothic style of France was still new to me, but that didn’t stop me from staring at all the glorious paintings and windows. Our tour guide showed us how each window told a story, and that you read it from bottom to top.
We went to Versailles, the Mona Lisa, and the Eiffel Tower. When we reached the top, I immediately fell in love with all of France. I can’t even fully describe how magnificent it was to see every building resting on the ground. A warm, comforting feeling blanketed me, and I could not stop smiling. I was in France. A place I only dreamed about as a little girl.
The most important thing I learned on this trip was that there is so much more in the world then my little city. That, the world is a huge place. It defiantly was a eye opener for me. Because of my trip, I now know what I want to do with my life. I know, that somewhere down the road, I will be traveling. Somewhere, sometime, I will be in a different country viewing all of it’s wonders. I’m not quite sure what God has in store for me, but I know that when my time comes, I’ll find myself standing under another piece of history or artwork; feeling just as wonderful and joyful as I had felt last week.
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