“But the truth of the matter is, there are more maps in the world than anyone can count. Every person draws a map that shows themselves at the center.
-By Catherynne M. Valente, The Boy Who Lost Fairyland
There are places in my life that have meaning. They are places where I have made incredible memories. Some of those places truly changed my life. The places I have gone to represent the story of my life.
- England- Bristol and London
- North Carolina- Charlotte, Kanuga (located in Hendersonville)
- Georgia- Atlanta
- Florida- Ponte Vedra, Orlando
- New York- New York City
- Costa Rica- Atenas, San Jose, Monteverde
- Missouri- St. Louis
- Illinois- Chicago
- South Carolina- Charleston, Greenville
- West Virginia- Welsh
I have traveled three times outside of the country. The first time, my family went to France, but was too young to really remember much. In my younger years, my family went on a trip to Colorado and we went white water rafting and spent time with cousins. In summer of 2006, my mom took me to New York and I saw my first show on Broadway, which was Wicked.
Florida, Virginia, Missouri, and North Carolina are places I have gone to multiple times. North Carolina was my hometown since 1997 when we moved from Georgia.I have lived in Charlotte since 2002 and have created many memories there. Other North Carolina memories include Gardner Webb and Kanuga, an Episcopalian Conference Center in the mountains.
The best memory I have of Missouri was when I went to Missouri alone and spent a week with my grandma. The real highlight was when she took me to see the musical, Annie. That musical was my favorite musical back in elementary school. I have other St. Louis memories such as attending Cardinals games and visiting the city museum.
I have going to Florida since I was a baby. I have spent most of my Florida memories in Ponte Vedra.I have gone to Disney World three times, but the best was when I went with the school where we went on a leadership experience where we got to go behind the scenes. The chaperones allowed us to explore the parks alone as long as we were with somebody.
As for South Carolina, I went on a mission trip to Charleston for a weekend. In Greenville, my mom took me to see “Phantom of the Opera”. The show was just hauntingly beautiful and the musical is now of my favorite musicals.
The best cousin trip was to Alaska. We went on Tauck Bridges tour. We got to go on several hikes, geocached, met sled dogs, panned for gold, etc. Another cousin trip was Chicago, a place I wanted to go to since elementary school. I went last year and enjoyed it.
Last year, my family got to go on a pilgrimage to England. Our church choir was in residence at the Bristol Cathedral. There were 72 pilgrims in all and we got explore many ancient ruins and other historical sites. We got to see three castles, Stonehenge, Tintern Abbey, and attended ten church services, etc. It wasn’t the places that we saw that was the best part. It was in fact the fellowship that the group had for each other and that added meaning to the trip.
On a side note, my family went up two days early to get more of London. During those two days, mom took me to see the West End production of Les Mis. It was a dream of mine since I became obsessed with the musical. The staging was incredible and the casting was brilliant. The casting was so incredible that I was able to laugh and cry just like excepted. The moment the lights went off and the the music began, I just knew it was going be more then I expected.