It was the summer of 2011 when some of my family members arrived in New York City. They live in Colombia and our only chance to spend time together is for a couple of weeks every other summer. Our most recent adventure was a road trip to Niagara Falls with various stops along the way.
We woke up around five in the morning, and left. My father’s van was packed with suitcases, and snacks. Before arriving at our first stop, my father (who was in the drivers’ seat for the moment) asked me to get him some plums from the trunk. I got the fruits but I had to wash them, so I left my phone and my big wallet on top of the bumper in the back of the car. When I returned, I passed him the plums and got back in the van.
Thirty minutes had passed and we were going up I-87 N when another driver honked at us saying something about the car. We opened and closed the back door, but he kept pointing to the back of the van, and it was only then that it hit me. I had left my wallet on top of the bumper. Amazingly enough, the wallet was still there. No one believed my luck. The best part was that my parents had designated me as the one to keep track of the money. All of our savings were in my wallet. At that moment I laughed simply out of nervousness.
Our first stop was Woodstock, New York, the famous town of the 1969 Music Festival, a three-day concert. My cousins and their father loved rock, not me. Never in my life had I expected to admire and love this town full of olden times. The town itself contained a very calm atmosphere and because of this it would have never occurred to me that a rock concert took place here. The stores around the town were small, yet large at the same time. They were tangibly and structurally petite, but with an air of having gone through a lot of the madness like the ones from the music festival in 1969.
Ironically, a satisfying tranquility ruled every corner of the town. We found a park and laid on the grass for a while. My cousin and I looked at each other and although it was only the beginning of our trip, we knew that our time together was coming to an end. The next time she would be back she would be in college and we would no longer be teens with easy, simple lives. It broke my heart to look back and realize that all of those crazy and fun Christmas’ we enjoyed would never happen the same way they did when we were kids. It would soon be July 25th, the day for them to leave and for me trying to fill that empty space in my heart is something I struggle with daily.
Our next stop was the state’s capital, Albany. We walked around the Capitol Hill and the State University of Albany. It was interesting to see the administrative buildings of New York State. We then left for Buffalo and looked for a Motel 6 since we knew it was a cheap place to spend the night. The next morning we departed for Niagara Falls and seeing Canada from the US side felt cool. However, I must admit that what captivated my attention most was the quality time spent with those who grew up next to me, but whom I barely got to see.
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