Trip of a lifetime

Empowering students through summer travel experiences

Madelyn Gallardo

Summer 2011

When I applied to Trip of a Lifetime, I thought it was going to be an amazing experience and it was. I was very happy when I got accepted to Trip of a Lifetime because I knew it was truly a trip of a lifetime. I was also a little nervous to go on the teen tour because I didn’t know anyone but I knew that I was going to make new friends along the way.

     I had already had the chance to talk to a few people in the airport and on the plane. Our first stop was Denver which I was really excited for because I wanted to see how many more people where going on the teen tour. Our flight was the first in Denver. Everyone was starving so we went to get our lunch. When we came back two more flights had landed. When all the flights had landed I remember thinking to myself that there were a lot of kids and that it would be so hard to bond with everyone.

     When we got to our first campground we were told to get in a circle to discuss who would be in our tent and the rules. The first night they took us all to in indoor water park which was so cool because I have never been to an indoor water park. The first night of camping was so much fun because everyone bonded in their tents but it was too bad we had to pack our tents and move to the next campground. In the next campground we got our tents and put them up. I was really excited for that night because we got to so sightseeing for the first time. The first night in Rapid City we went to Mt. Rushmore which so cool because we went on July 4. How many people can say that they went to Mt. Rushmore on Independence Day? Not a whole lot of people. We went bowling the second night in Rapid City which was so much fun because when we were bowling we got to sing and dance. Everyone including the staff was singing and dancing that’s when I knew we were one big happy family. After Rapid City we went to Cody, Wyoming. Cody, Wyoming was my second favorite place because we got to go whitewater rafting. I was a little bit nervous because I have never been whitewater rafting. After we finished I was so happy I did it because it was so much fun. I got to sit up in the front which meant I got wet a lot. After Cody, Wyoming we went to Yellowstone National Park. Yellowstone was so pretty everywhere you looked you would see green. We saw a lot of animals. Sadly after camping in Yellowstone we wouldn’t camp for a while.

     We had finally gotten to the hotels. I was so excited because I have never been in a hotel before and it would be my first time. Our first hotel was in Salt Lake City. When I entered the hotel room I was really happy because it was my first hotel room and it was big and pretty just as I imagined it.  All the hotels were very beautiful. We got to spend some time in the pool but not a lot but it was ok because we had a lot of activities to do. We stayed at UCLA for three nights which was really cool because I have never been in a dorm or even seen the inside of university.  Los Angles was my favorite place on the trip. It was my favorite because we got to go to Disneyland. I have never been to Disneyland or Disney World. It has always been my dream to go to Disneyland or Disney World to meet Mickey Mouse and I finally did that thanks to Trip of a Lifetime. I got to see the fireworks in Disneyland and that when it hit me. I started to cry because I thought it was a dream but it was reality. I will never forget Disneyland and the day I spent there. After Los Angles we went to San Diego.  San Diego was so cool because we got to go surfing and I have never been surfing which was cool. When I stood up in the surf board I was so proud even if it was just for 2 seconds. Las Vegas was our second to last hotel which was sad because the trip was coming to an end. We got to stay at the Monte Carlo hotel which was beautiful. Las Vegas was just as I expected it to be bright. We went camping for three more nights which was cool because everyone bonded at the last campfire we had together. We went to Sedona to do the Pink Jeep Tours which was amazing. Going down rocks and up rocks was so cool. We got to see rocks that looked a lot like characters from a movie or TV show. Sadly after Sedona we got to our last hotel. The last two days where bonding time with everyone. It was hard to say good bye to everyone.

     Thanks to Trip of a Lifetime I got to meet new people and explore new places and make new memories. It was truly the best summer of my life and a trip of a lifetime. This trip has taught me to have confidence in myself and to believe that anything can come true. It has also made me understand that I should be more active in my community and to motivate the kids to do better in school so they can have better opportunity.

Thank you for making this the best summer of my life!
 

Photos and Videos of Madelyn's Trip

  • 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

    "I am really and forever will be thankful to Trip of a Lifetime for giving me such an exceptional experience this summer that will be forever remembered."

    "I am really and forever will be thankful to Trip of a Lifetime for giving me such an exceptional experience this summer that will be forever remembered."

    Jennifer

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