Looking Forward

May 13, 2012
By Tyler Cortez BRONZE, Ormond Beach, Florida
Tyler Cortez BRONZE, Ormond Beach, Florida
2 articles 0 photos 0 comments

There I was, four years old, standing in the driveway, then bounded by snow, of what used to be our home in Washington D.C. My Washington Nationals jacket kept my body at a cozy ninety-seven degrees, while I witnessed my dad and uncles load the few remaining pieces of furniture into the bright orange U-Haul truck sitting in the ice-covered street. The tear running down my face would have frozen if not for my Opa’s brushing it off in a tender moment of trying to console my broken heart. The moving truck’s engine roared, signaling one thing to me: I was about to be stripped from the atmosphere where, at the age of four, I knew I belonged. We were embarking on a nine-hour journey south, to Daytona Beach, Florida, our new “home.” Washington D.C. was - no, is my true home. The city had become a part of me, like a vital organ. And how would I survive without that dynamic tissue?
If possible, my blood would run thick with the distinct pedestrians flooding the streets of D.C., New York, even Boston. However, my first excursion to the dauntingly large epicenter of life, known as New York City, had me awestruck. The cultural diversity, arousing height of the superstructures called skyscrapers, and the infinite energy of the city excited me and frightened me all at one miraculous moment. To assimilate to one of these singular organisms populated with some of the most stimulating people in the world sounds like a dream, but it is just within my reach. Upon attending a university located either in or on the outskirts of such a magnificent magnet for life, I could truly experience the type of environment in which I long to be immersed. An animated, aggressive, energetic city, too big for its own good would imbue my being with the palpable skills necessary to not only survive, but blossom in the urban jungles of the world.
I can see it now: eighteen years after leaving D.C., sitting with my fellow classmates as an honorable alumnus congratulates the class of 2016. We dawn our lustrous gowns and radiant caps with tassels draped to the left. My palms sweat as the anticipation builds for the moment when I finally receive my diploma and my tassel irrevocably shifts to the right. Another bright orange U-Haul truck is loaded with the furniture from my apartment, as I am about to embark on the journey known as the rest of my life. The future is daunting, but I face it with determination, for I am a college graduate.

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