Trip of a lifetime

Empowering students through summer travel experiences

Alphonso Hicklin

Summer 2011

 It all started for me when my mom and I arrived at the J.F.K airport. I noticed that there wasn’t any other person my skin color or race. It wasn’t my first time in this type of situation but I still found it surprising. That was the beginning of the trip for me and in my point of view I thought it was already interesting but this wasn’t the beginning of my unforgettable experience. Here’s the actual start.

     When my teacher presented the trip description to my class I thought to myself “wow what a trip. Sounds nice to be a part of”. So I spoke to my teacher about it and I signed up. The real surprise came when I got an email saying that my application has been reviewed and they wanted an interview with me. Suspense and excitement started to build inside me. After the interview I was told that the final decision about me would be made soon. As I waited soon I got an email saying I was accepted and I was able to be a part of the trip. I thought about everything thing and I asked myself “did I really get accepted? Will I actually go or is it meant for me to go on this trip?” As the school year ended time came closer and I couldn’t wait.

     As everyone boarded the plane I was a little nervous. It was my first time flying and the things I’ve done heard about planes and the many things I’ve seen didn’t seem all that good. I was told it was all going to be fine and it was. When we all arrived at the camp grounds in Utah everyone was getting to know each other a little and everything seemed to be going good. As the day went on things got better and I already meet some really cool people. The first night we went bowling after dinner and I though it was ok to start the trip off with. The first night was also the night that I meet someone that is now very close to me and also the people that I would spend most of my time on the trip with. As I laid down to go to sleep later that night I said to myself this trip really going to be some special to me and others. I was really grateful to be there.

     After camping in Salt Lake City, Utah we went camping in Bryce Canyons, Utah. This was one of the most memorable points of the trip to everyone. One of our activities was to go hiking in the canyons. While hiking, clouds begin to darken and we started to here thunder. Soon it started pouring raining and then hailing. Who would guess it would hail in the middle of the summer on a sunny day like it was in the beginning. When we arrived on the bus after the hiking and torcher of the rain and hail everyone one was upset and wet and freezing cold. I can’t still remember the looks on everyone’s face after the hiking.

     The rest of the trip was great. I can talk about it all day and tell almost every detail about it. I could honestly say that I never pictured myself doing what I did on the trip. While on the trip I learned things about myself, about others and about life in total. The thing I saw and did is all things that people see on TV. and here about. Places like Las Vegas. I see many movies and heard stories about it. It was like a fantasy world in my head until I actually was there.

     The main thing I learned on the trip was that life is serious. It’s not all fun and games. As you get older things become harder in a way. Yeah when you’re a kid your kind of worry frees. When I was young summer used to be one of the longest times of the year for me. Now summer goes by so fast the try to make the best out every moment. One thing that I noticed also is that some experience that I have gone through in my life most kids or people won’t ever see or go through like I have. This trip allowed me to see the other side of life that I want to be living one day. It showed me that with dedication and motivation I can live the life that you see people on TV living. The city is not a bad place to live but it’s not the place where I can’t reach my full potential. My goal after I graduate is to get out of the city and to do something big for myself. I don’t just want to be another random person. I want to die being honored, and having courage and being happy knowing that I made something of myself. As I look back on my life right now I can say that I’m turning sixteen and I’m on the right road of life. I never done drugs, I’m not in a gang, I’ve never been arrested, and I’m doing good in school and I’m black and Hispanic and I live in the city. That’s something that without this trip I don’t think I would have noticed right now. I believe I would have figured this out at some point in time but not how I see it now. All I’m saying is after this trip I have a better view of life. A better view of what I going to do with myself. Now that I have seen places I can be with hard work, there is nothing or no one stopping me. No it’s all said and done all you have to do is wait and see down the line 20 years from now. Then you can really see what my life has become.

     Once again I would like to thank you all for giving me this chance of being a part of this trip. If this trip never does the things it has done for me to others, you made a difference in one person life and you should feel good about that. I may be multiracial and I may live in the ghetto but what I’m going to do with my life is going to be historical.
 

  • testimonialImg
    "I may be multiracial and I may be living in the ghetto but what I am going to do with my life is going to be historical."
    "I may be multiracial and I may be living in the ghetto but what I am going to do with my life is going to be historical."

    Alphonso

  • testimonialImg
    “This trip made me realize that there’s more to the world than the South Bronx.”
    “This trip made me realize that there’s more to the world than the South Bronx.”

    Selina

  • testimonialImg
    "The trip has taught me to have confidence in myself and believe that anything can come true."
    "The trip has taught me to have confidence in myself and believe that anything can come true."

    Madelyn

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