As I was running along the River Thames with my classmates to catch our group’s bus I realized that everything was going to be okay. In February of this year my four year old cousin, Amelie, died. My world was turned upside down and I could only see in black and white. The world had turned into this bubble of sadness and it was difficult to see anything outside of it. Long before Amelie had died my mom signed me up to go to Europe with my classmates. She knew that whatever happened in the coming months I would need this trip. I am so thankful to her that she did.
QUARTER-FINALIST 2015 FTF TEEN TRAVEL WRITING SCHOLARSHIP
On April 3rd of 2015 Mr.Dibrano, my government teacher, loaded 13 students onto a plane and we….waited. For three hours we waited on the tarmac at Chicago O’Hare airport as the airport mechanics worked on our plane. Finally, at ten at night we lifted off. London was spectacular. It was everything that I thought it would be, but ten times better. We saw so much in our two days there, we walked and walked and walked all over town. I was hoping that I would see Kit Harrington or Daniel Radcliffe, but to my dismay we did not.
Our final night in London my group decided to ditch the Harry Potter tour and try to make it to the London Eye, stand in line, ride the 30 minute Ferris wheel, and make it back to St. Paul’s Cathedral in an hour and a half. All of us were nervous that we would not make it back, but Mr.Dibrano encouraged us that this would be worth it. Boy was it worth it. The view from the top of the Eye was breathtaking; I could not believe how beautiful it was. As our cabin rose up the sun went down. The gray London skies quickly changed into vibrant shades of purple and orange. A hundred pictures and thirty minutes later, we took off.
We ran down the Queen’s Walk along the River Thames with mighty speed. We made a 22 minute walk from the London Eye to the Millennium Bridge in 10 minutes. We saw London’s true form that night. We walked (ran) with the people of the city. As we were running we were all laughing and talking about how tired we were. You could practically hear Sweet Disposition playing in the background as if we were in the newest coming of age film. When we finally made it to the Millennium we all took a moment to see the city lit up. It was overwhelming. The city was so beautiful. St. Paul’s at the end of the bridge was lit up, the whole experience was magical.
Whenever I think about my trip to Europe I think about so many different things. I remember being moved by The Young Martyr at the Louvre, I remember making the climb up to Assisi, I think about the pounds of gelato I ate in Florence, but my most vivid memory is running down the Queen’s Walk trying to make it to the bus with all of my friends. Europe popped my bubble of sadness and helped me see the bigger picture. There is so much more to discover, and I look forward to discovering it.
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