Saturday, July 30, 2011

Home At Last

Being back home in Pinole feels relatively normal, yet incredibly strange.

As I stepped foot into my dusty bedroom, everything is as I had left it exactly twenty five days ago, yet the girl returning to it is anything but the same. There is a beauty in returning to a familiar place and realizing how one has changed and evolved as a person.

It was a long day of traveling: After a quick breakfast at the Georgia Tech. Hotel & Conference Center, we hurried to ATL to return the rental car and check in our baggage. We were perfectly on time for our first flight to Houston, Texas. The rush to catch the transfer flight to San Francisco, however, was slim—we made it just in time as the passengers were boarding the plane.

That of course left no room in between for us to catch lunch, so Ms. Bulls bought our luncheon on the plane to enjoy while flying high in the cloudy sky. I had a grilled chicken salad with Italian balsamic vinegar dressing, which was very delectable.

After a bumpy landing, our cohort made our way to the baggage claim, where my sister and some of Aiyana’s family were waiting. We snapped a last photograph of ourselves as we closed the book of our journey and headed home.

I have to thank Aiyana and Kye for being the best companions to travel to and experience the Southeast with. It was a pleasure having their company.

I also thank Ms. Bulls, our chaperone, for being our guardian and taking care of us, even on the days when we were busy with our studies and many activities. She always made sure we were healthy and happy, finding time to visit and check up on us.

And last, but certainly not least, I must thank Mr. Ramsey, Ms. Kronenberg, and Don for making this entire experience possible for us. It was no doubt a life-changing experience that I would have never dreamed of having, and this has opened up our eyes and minds to the world and everything it has to offer, so much more beyond what we would have ever known.

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