Off to Paris This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

April 17, 2008
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Driving to the airport in early morning, I felt excited. Although I was heading abroad for my first time alone, I felt upbeat and alive. I was spending the summer in Paris.

While looking for more interesting things to do besides sleeping and eating, I found programs for learning languages abroad, and jumped at the chance to study French in this city known for its art, fashion, food, and culture. As I arrived at the airport where I would leave my family, I still felt only exhilaration. I excitedly made my way through security, leaving my loved ones behind.

My connecting flight was in Frankfurt, Germany, 14 hours from Denver. Sitting in a cramped plane watching bad movies couldn't dampen my excitement. When the woman next to me asked me where I was going, I happily answered and was pleased to note a tone of jealousy in her response.

But when we arrived in Frankfurt, trepidation began to set in. Being in an enormous, busy building in a country where I could not speak the language was intimidating, but as I found my way, I gained confidence. When I boarded the second plane and discovered that the flight was less than an hour, I was filled with excitement and dread as I thought of how I would manage in a country with a new language.

When I stepped on foreign ground for the first time, I was ecstatic. I gathered my bags and joined the crowd of people waiting for friends and family. I quickly had my first experience trying to communicate in a language that I had only practiced in school. As we left the airport, I looked for familiar monuments I had read about, but the landscape looked unremarkable.

Then, with one sharp turn, the Eiffel Tower came into view, and I was finally in Paris.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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Dolce & Abbey said...
Jan. 29, 2010 at 4:06 pm
Well written and concise. Hope to go back to Paris one day too!
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