Losing China

January 19, 2010
By , Fairfield, CT
I knew there was a slight chance I wouldn’t be able to go to china but I was so happy I convinced myself I was going. That put me in such a tough position. I should have just listened to my dad when he told me don’t get your hopes up.

“Ahhhhhh! Oh my god no way!!!” I screamed. “What are you yelling about this time Erika?” my dad asked me. “I got nominated for People to People!” I told him. “And if I pass an interview and give them $6,000 I can go to china!” “Wow sounds like a lot of money,” he said “Don’t get your hopes up”. No congratulations? Not even a pat on the back or a nod? Did he realize what was happening?

You see the thing is with People to People is that you get nominated by a teacher. I’m not quite sure how it works but I some how got nominated. So I had to have done something right. That’s why I didn’t understand how come he didn’t really care.

Later that afternoon I called Hope, Matt, and Sara. Hope had gotten her letter that afternoon too. We were all extremely excited. What could be better than traveling around the world with my 3 best friends? I could picture us all sitting next to each other on the plane and taking pictures together on the Great Wall of China. It was going to be great.

Later that night at dinner I told my parents all about china and People to People. “Erika we’re very pleased you got nominated for People to People but” my mother began. Oh no, that but. They were saying no. Nooooooooo! “$6,000 is a lot of money. A trip to china for 17 days can’t possibly cost that much,” they told me “it’s a scam. They’re trying to get money out of us. Don’t feel bad”. Don’t feel bad? I had just received the biggest disappointment of my life (so far) and they were telling me not to feel bad? “Are you kidding me?!” I yelled. “This is such an amazing opportunity! How can you turn this down? When am I ever going to get another chance like this again?” I pleaded. “Erika it’s a scam,” they told me once more “let it go”.

How was I supposed to let this go? They didn’t get it. This trip meant so much to me. They usually never understand things that mean a lot to me. My all time favorite quote my mother said to me was “Erika, I know you”. Whoa. No she doesn’t. If she knew me she would have sympathy for me that I couldn’t go. If she knew me she would have found the money because she knows how much I would have gotten out of the trip and how much it meant for me to go. Yet she still fails to understand me every time.

Sara, Hope, and Matt were disappointed that I couldn’t go but it didn’t seem to bother them. For the next 8 months china was constantly popping up in my life and each time it made me more and more sad. It was a continuous reminder that I wasn’t going. I frequently heard Matt, Sara, and Hope talk about their delegation and preparations for china. In social studies we did a whole unit on china. Isn’t it funny how I learned about everything I would be missing out on? The trip was killing me slowly which made it all the more painful. I couldn’t wait till the day finally came when they all went to china.

But that was only the beginning. I’ve heard so many stories from their trips. The stories were about the plain ride, their delegation and everything in-between. Everything Matt sees reminds him of china and he and Sara are always having disagreements over places they went and the things they did. Hope generally just spilled her guts to me. I didn’t mind too much but it was hard hearing about all I missed out on. My favorite moments were whenever there was an awkward silence someone would always randomly say “I miss my People to People friends!” or “I miss china!”

Looking back I definitely shouldn’t have gotten my hopes up so high. My life would have been so much easier if I had just faced reality in the beginning.

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