Monday, January 25, 2016

Day 1 (and 2 technically)

Allison Luppe
Plymouth, UK 

Sunday was a very emotional day for me. As some people might know, this will be the first time that I have ever traveled internationally and also the first time that someone in my immediate family has traveled internationally for quite some time at least. My dad did his best to stay strong and I did my best to help the best way I could. Eventually both of us realized that neither of us had to be strong for each other and we were able to move past it at least partially.

Considering it was Sunday after a snow storm, I was expecting a lot more trouble to get through security, but it came and went within ten or fifteen minutes including the time it took me to take off and put on my rain boots. I'm going to England, it seemed like a wise idea at the time. The flight to Atlanta was quick and painless though getting through Hartsfield-Jackson was like pulling teeth. Every time I would get to one of the stops that the train would be at, it would be starting to close and I couldn't get on in time. Eventually I got to the point that I had to jump on otherwise I knew for a fact that I would probably be late for boarding. Low and behold, I got there five minutes early!

The flight to London was actually one of the more interesting things that happened for a couple of reasons. The first being that I met an eighty year old British man named John who was finishing some volunteer work in Haiti and the stories he told were fascinating for me to listen to. He showed a great deal of passion for what he talked about, especially his project which he explained he didn't want to take a lot of credit for.

But the funniest thing to me was whenever he would talk about his wife. Both of my sets of grandparents have been together for fifty years, so this wasn't a new concept for me whenever John told me that he had been married for nearly fifty years. The way he described her, with her "wicked sense of humor" and telling me that they rarely argued, showed me just how much he truly loved her and made me hope that one day I would be able to experience that kind of devotion.

Sleeping on the plane was actually easier than I imagined it would be since the flight was actually half full and I had a seat next to me that I could use as a headrest. That isn't to say that it was an entirely comfortable sleep, but I at least got a bit of it at the very least.

The bus ride to Plymouth was also uneventful since I was trying to catch my sleep and make sure that I didn't miss my stop. Afterwards was where the real fun began.

The bus station in Plymouth is fairly centrally located, so whenever I got off the bus, I made my way towards where I thought would be the best route to the Student Centre where I would get my room key. Only five minutes later did I realize that I was missing an important piece of luggage; my suitcase! Thankfully the bus hadn't taken off with it and I was able to get back on my way, but the added thirty pounds definitely did not help me at all in an unfamiliar city and country. Eventually I found my way to the Student Centre, huffing and puffing from walking around so much. But that was only the beginning.

After I got my key, I found out that I would be staying at the very top floor of the building. At the time of this posting, I am unaware of any elevator or "lift" that could take me up to my room, so up the stairs I went. Once I got everything settled in, I made my way back out in order to pick up bedding and a couple of little things that I needed. As I mentioned before, I still was not quite sure of where I was and my orientation system didn't help me that much whenever, with bags in tow, I went out the wrong exit of the shop that I had gone into. Almost a half hour later I finally found my way back to my room and was able to set everything up the way that I wanted as you can see here:

Once that was done, I got to spend some time talking to one of my friends and relaxing a little before I headed out for what I am hoping will be the last time of the day to get dinner. I decided that for now I would only go to places that I knew for sure in relation to my hall and that led me to The Roundabout, a pub not far from where my hall was. The food was fairly good and I enjoyed the energy of it, even if I didn't understand why the bacon tasted so sweet or the coleslaw tasted like it had been drenched in vinegar. But those are minor things in the grand scheme of things. 

Once I got back to my room, I decided that I wanted to take some pictures of the view that I had outside. Unfortunately, since it was already dark you can't get the full scope of it, but this is a picture that I thought worked for the time being. I am hoping that I will be able to take a better picture in the morning with better lighting and hopefully with my better camera. 

Those are my adventures of the day (days).

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

American high school students should travel and learn more about the world

"It is better to travel ten thousand miles than to read ten thousand books." This is a famous Chinese saying that was cited by the first lady Mrs. Obama during her speech in Beijing University in 2014. Traveling is the most popular learning style in Ancient China. Taking the greatest philosopher, educator and thinker of china, Confucius, as an example; He took his students to travel and study in more than nine state, and he believed this is one of terrific approach of doing self-cultivation. This opinion is also appropriate for today, and it get more popular because of the benefits of traveling are developing independent ability, building up communicative skill, and providing opportunities.

Based on the online statistic, only 35% American have a passport which means 65% American don’t even have chance to travel abroad. A lot of American study hard through high school in order to get in to a good college. Unlike other country such as New Zealand and Australia, the students usually take a gap year to travel and see the world after high school. In china, high students are love to visit or take summer school in other country during long-term vacation. Student can learn a lot of things during traveling.

First of all, independence is an essential quality for America high school students to adapt in this diverse world, and traveling is an excellent method to develop this trait. During the travel, students have to package and be responsible for their luggage. Specially, for the world trip, students need to package depend on their destination. Before the trip, students need to do some research about weather, location, culture, food and people. For example, students want to go Brazil in January, and at that time, temperature in there is 27 degrees Celsius. Students need to prepare more summer clothes not warm clothes. Because students travel in different country, where people may not speak English, problem solving skill is essential. The first thing I learned when I travel to different country is to remember the emergency call and the number of Chinese Embassy. When I’m in danger or meet some emergency situation, I can find somebody to help me. Personal safety is extremely important during travel, and knowing how to ensure their own security is a signal of being independence.

Second, communication is another lesson that people can learn from traveling. One online research shows that almost 80% American can only speak English. Some people may think they don’t know other language, so they cannot go travel to another country. Actually, this is fault thought, because language is only part of communication. When my uncle traveled to Russia last year, he only knew a little bit Russian. He used picture on the menu to order food, body language to ask round and electronic dictionary to talk with the other people in the bar. He had really great time in Russia, and he made a lot of friends. High school students should practice communication as soon as possible, because it is very useful skill in future. When people travel to different countries, they have to deal with diverse type of people. Students will meet the people who are really nice, who are don’t care about you or who want to steal your money. Because students will deal with many different people in travel, they will prepare and not panic when they meet the same situation.

In addition, the purpose of travel is to enrich people’s vision, and people can find a lot of opportunities during or after traveling. One of my classmate found an internship when he traveled to Japan. The man that he met during his travel is an office manager work of a huge company. The manager really likes him, and he offer my classmate an internship opportunity. Also, having unique perspective is helpful when student apply jobs. When students visited many place, their worldview and the way of thinking will become mature than others who only stay in their own country. Nowadays, businesses are looking for people who have unconventional or divergent thinking. The perfect way for high school students to lay the foundation for their future is to travel.

       Indeed, traveling for high school students seems waste time and money. However, becoming a responsible, social and mature people helps adapt themselves to the social development. Toady, having only good grade is not enough to catch up the development of this society. Experiencing different culture is the key to success in future. Every year, over million visitor come to America which explain this is a diverse country. However, this is not an excuse for not traveling. I suggest every American high school student don’t wait other countries’ people to visit American. They should go abroad and use their experience and knowledge to spread the American Dream. 

It is always a good idea

      Have you ever thought about how people live around the world? According to the United Nations (UN), the Earth has 190 different countries. Each one has their own culture, their own history. Even though you speak the same language that they speak you probably do not are equal. So, come with me to see some things that can interesting you and make you want to "discover" the world.
      Fist, you have to want to experiment new things. At the beginning it is not easy, but in the long run you will see how much you learn and enjoy it. No excuses, you can travel by yourself or with family/friends. Each experience is unique.
      People that travel learn a lot about different culture, especially if they live a period of time with someone that is native. Besides learn another culture you can make a lot of friends, and maybe flirt with someone. You can learn about different method to do some kind of food or a different method to study math. Another thing is that you can learn more about yourself, overcoming challenges that you though you could not do. You can learn all this and much more and it is not a boring way to learn.
      Brazil is a big country and each region has kind of a different typical food, animals and accent. Brazilians that live in the south is more like Germany and Italian people, because in the past this people lived there. Their typical food is barbecue (churrasco) and their typical animal is maned wolf (Lôbo- Guará). But, in the other side, people that live in the middle is not like Germany or Italian and even though that people eat barbecues it is not their typical food. Their typical food is pequi, and it is very popular there.
     As you can see in just one country you can learn more than one "culture". Don't be shy and do not waste time. You can learn more about Brazil or more about any country. I'm having a wonderful experience traveling. I did not finish this trip but I already want to do another one.


Today I’ll teach you about importance of travel in our life.
In the world, many kind of situations are happening at same time.
This means when you just stay in your place like your hometown or country, you can’t see what’s happen in many other world.
Just go and see many other things! Don’t be shy about another culture.
You can dance and sing that another country’s tradition. Don’t be shy! When you shy for these things, you can’t catch gorgeous thing in their culture. You must change your concept. If you change your mind and travel around the world, you can find most important thing in your lifetime. And feel sense of freedom.
You can do anything that you want!
When you experience many other things at different place in your life, you can find your talent or you can find your job which one is fit on you. This means If you stay in one place like your hometown, you can get your which you don’t want to do. Do you want to do what you don’t like? No, you want to do what you love!
The last thing that I want to say is “ Just get out of your place. Feel, touch, taste, see and find what you want to do.”
Thank you for listening.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Gatlinburg pics of heaven!

The best place to experience American lifestyle and its cultural . Gatlinburg is one of the most important rigion ,visited by a million of people a year .Furthermore, it opens every single day to attract tourists to it.  Gatlinburg is surrounded by trees and it has a lot of animals that you may not see  in another place . Anyway, when we arrived at the hotel ,our room had a spectacular view that has a balcony.The next day , when I got up early as usual , I made a cup of  coffee and took a chair and sat on the balcony. "This is unbelievable," I said. When I meditated on the phrase I had said and I looked after that ,I saw pics of heaven that led me to be thankful  of Allah which creates everything, glory be to Allah, charming landscape with older original Smokey Mountain. The sky was clear and the sun was shining. Bird's songs , river and a nice atmosphere , they should be enough to relax and enjoy drinking a coffee. Morover I was into my family because I had called them the day before, and they were well. In conclusion , Smoky Mountain is a beautiful spot you won't have ever seen a remarkable place like it ! You should visit.

Monday, January 18, 2016


      Experiencing the worst service in Dick's restaurant, tasting the spiciest pepper in Pepper Palace, and relaxing my whole body in the hot and smooth jacuzzi, compose a part of the Gatlinburg trip. Speaking up the feeling of the another half part of the trip is mixed with a little bit thrilling, some of chilly and a lot of fun.

     Gatlinburg is famous as skiing and snowboarding, every year many people come with their family to have fun in Ober Gatlinburg Ski Area during the winter time. The activities include ski, snowboarding and snow tubing from 9 am to 10pm, and because of the price, we decided to go there at night. After we putted on the long socks and several warm clothes, all of us expect for Faisal were ready to meet the challenge of ski. For most of us, this was our first time to ski; Jae was the only experienced skier.

     Actually, there were a lot of people went to ski at night. Some children carried the heavy ski equipment with their hands red with the cold. Some professional young people came as a group with the colorful ski board and bright jacket, the heavy ski boot on their feet seems like fashionable boots with the unique decorations. Not like us, we took us almost one hour for changing ski suit, finding locker and figuring out how to put the annoying and ugly ski boots.

     I know how to ice skating, and I thought maybe that’s the reason that I’m not afraid of snow. Although this is my first time to use snow board, I feel more excited than nervous. However, the reality wasn’t as simple as I though. After I struggled with the balance a little bit I can barely stand on the snow. Because of Jae are better than us, I asked he to lead the way and teach me how to ski. He told me that knowing how to stop is important for beginner. I listened very carful and tried so hard to do what he said, but my ski board and my legs just out of control. I only can use the ski pole to make myself move. Jae though abadi not first time to ski, so he decided to take me and balbo to experience the “real” ski. I stumbled to the access where people can take a cable seat to go up the mountain. It was a long cable railroad. The temperature started to get cold. I can clearly see clearly our breath steamed in the air, and our view were fog. Gradually, I cannot clearly see the front red cable seat. When we realized some thing was wrong, we already far away from the noise and crowd. Sliding on the top of the tranquil woods; surrounding by thick fog; those scenes that we only can find in the scared movies emerge vividly in front of us. The railroad we picked was not for beginner. We are going to the top of mountain, the professional area. For Jae, he had confidence to ski from that area, but for me, ski from the hillside with the steepness of almost 90 degrees, it is play a joke with my life. The only way to get down the mountain is to take off my ski board and walk down.  

     Snow is the most mystical creature in the world. When I was young, my favorite thing was trampling snow. The squelch sound when I stepped on snow was the euphonic. However, my perspective of snow was totally changed after I left my footprint in the snow. Because my two legs were too weak to keep balance, I have to sidle up to walk down. The squelch sound was not pleasing anymore. Visibility was really poor that I can only reach less than10 meter. The snow board started to get heavier, and my speed start to slow down. Looking at the professional skier roared past beside me, I started to get excited. I asked myself, are you really want to walk on the side of the ski slope? The answer of course is negative. I asked joe to teach me how to control my speed and try my best to make my ski board listen to me. Although I was fall down many times, I was very calm. Maybe it’s because I was born in North China, I felt I belong to the snow and more relax when I was skiing with high speed. I will never forget the experience of learning how to ski and enjoying the happiness of skiing.