Road tripping across America

image There comes a point where road tripping becomes a way of life. In a country like America this is almost a necessity of you’re going to enjoy it. The humongous distances, the endless interstate highways, freeways, state roads, etc become a blur and life is on the road. Life becomes travelling between friends, campsites, monuments – working out which meal we will have cheap sandwiches and which meal we will actually go to a diner at best or one of America’s endless choices of fast food restraunt. Our favourite has been the slightly more upmarket Mexican – Chipotles and the more questionable ones we’ll put down to an interesting experience have been ‘Waffle House’ and ‘Long John Silvers’.
Over the last few weeks it’s very interesting how a 9 hour drive has become a very doable day and a 14 hour drive is ‘Ok team – we can do this!’ Most days the wide open road is amazing and enthralling, the scenery fantastic – other days the drab view outside mirrors your mood and you ‘survive’. Either way the journey continues and we learn something about America, each other or ourselves.
Here are some of the kids’ reflections.
By Christos

imageLast night we stayed at one of my baba’s pen friends in Texas – her name is Carla and she lives in De Leon which is 2 hours away from Dallas. We only stayed one night cause we had to get to Kansas City to pick up our aunty Jenny Gigga.
We watched some TV and there was a barbeque – we had some very mummy foods. After dinner we played some soccer – it was fun. Carla makes movies and a TV show called Texas cousins – she showed us some of them and we laughed a lot. I found it very interesting that she made movies.


The next day before we left, we went to car museum and there were cars from early 1900s . By Yas

imageYesterday we were in the car for a long time. In the car we did three hours of home work and played cards. It was at least eleven hours and we were driving from Texas to Kansas City to see one of my baba’s friend from University when he was studying in America. Her names is Erin and her daughter Zoe is 15, and Erin’s husband is Kaveh. We got to there house at about 11pm and we went straight to bed. The next day when we got up we started our home school work and I am doing my home work with the dog next to me right now. By Yasmina

I love the dogs that we have visited so much. I love Kernel Longbody and Izzi in Kansas City. I held them by their leads and I payed with them. They sat next to me while I did my school work. I gave them treats – they did tricks when I gave them treats – Kernel Longbody jumped up on his back legs and Izzy also did that and I then gave her a treat.

One day we went for a picnic and we had the dogs on a lead. Zoe did some gymnastics for us and Yasi did too. We played with a kite and it was so much fun that day. We also met some other dogs at the park when we were playing frisbee. Such cute dogs. One was a chihuahua .

Cathy C and Kathy K dogs were Jensen and Sadie. They were so much fun and we gave them some little walks. Jensen was a bit scared of people but he got really used to me because I pretended he wasn’t there for a little while, then he started to love me and licked me. I played with Sadie and her toys. I played with her most and I tried to teach her somethings. So much fun. The cats also were fun too. One of the cats was Lola who was furry and I picked her up lots. The other cats were Izzy and Zen.

imageMy baba’s pen friend Carla had a little dog called Chloe and she was a bit barky and a bit bitey but still nice. Some of their friends came over and we ate dinner outside and had hamburgers and hotdogs and they were delicious. It was so much fun at their house. There was some really cool Halloween decorations. I wish I had them at my place.

imageAt Kathleen’s house there were three dachshunds – they were Sally, Lucy and Prince Edward. They were so much fun and we had lots of time to play with them. Then our friends Gabi and Levi came over for two nights to play with us. We played a castle game – we went to sleep late cause we were so busy building it. The other night was late cause we were allowed to watch a movie. The dogs watched with us. It was so lovely to see them again. We met them in Russia at like a little campsite but there were huts and rooms.
By Zoi

imageYesterday we went to the Badlands. The Badlands is a national park where we camped in a camping ground. My aunty Jenny Gigga came from Australia to spend the last few weeks with us.
So when we got to the camp site it was freezing we set up the tents quickly. We have three small tents so it did take all of us to set the tents up. Then we went for a walk up the hill next to camp site to see the sunset. When we were at the top of the hill we herd coyotes in the distance and we could see lots of bisons. We also saw the sun set which was beautiful. It started to get dark so we went and made some dinner – we had Two minute noodles then we went to bed .
imageThe next day it was still freezing so we made toast on our cooker. Our tents had ice all over them so to get them dry quicker Toby, Kalika, Zoi, Emilio & 1 all held one corner of the tents and we ran up and down the oval to dry them.
By Yasmina

 

imageWe met Kathleen in Russia at Lake Baikal when she was travelling with her son Luke and his wife Maria and her two lovely grandkids – Levi and Gabi. I didn’t think that we would ever visit them cause they live so far away and our initial plans weren’t going to include America. However our plans changed and we made the trip to Portland, Oregon to visit them all. Luke and Maria live four hours away in Washington but they came down for the weekend. We went to an indoor swimming pool and had lots of fun and I also learnt how to do a tumble turn. My aunty Gigga does lots of swimming and she taught me to do a tumble turn. Kathleen had three dogs.

The third day we were there we went to a pumpkin patch which is a place where there is kind of like a pumpkin festival. We went to the corn maze – it was quite difficult because it was so big and there were confusing paths everywhere. We ate some delicious corn that was roasted and I loved it with garlic salt. Also as part of our ticket we got a caramel apple. We also got some pumpkins and carved them when we got back to the house. First time I’ve ever carved them but I decorated some in Houston with Cathy C & K.

imageKathleen cooked some pretty delicious food and my favourite meal was definitely when she made us an early thanksgiving meal. It was my favourite because I love Turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy and there was pretend meat for the vegetarians. I really loved it. It was so fun doing the pumpkins and playing with Levi and Gabi again. My favourite was cops and robbers that we played on the last day while the car was getting packed.

imageThe driving around is pretty hard sometimes because the distances are so long. I normally do my school work in the morning and I read Harry Potter. I’m up to half way through number 5. If the drive is longer than six hours we get to watch a movie. We get a scarf and put it across two front seats and then we put our small Greek DVD player up. It’s sometimes hard to watch especially if you’re in the back. We only have 9 more days of our trip and two more long trips which are over six hours. Then we’ll be in LA and getting ready to fly home. I’m so excited to get home. But Tobes

Camping
imageWe have being doing some camping lately – the first time we went camping was in the Bad lands National Park – that’s when we all got a bit sick because it was freezing.
imageThe second time we went camping was in the Redwoods.
The redwood wasn’t really red I don’t know why they call it that. We camped in a small camp ground and it rained all night non-stop.

Last night we went to the beach, the water was really cold but I still went swimming and was thrown over by the waves. I haven’t seen the ocean since we left Greece four mouths ago. Oh actually we saw it in England but just for a day.
We slept in the car last night it was so hot and not much room – but we made it and now we are driving to the Grand Canyon. By Yasmina

imageWe are staying with a lady called Nancy who is from SERVAS and she lives in San Fransisco. We went to to the city by a small train and we walked and walked and walked lots. First we walked the beach and we made a little shop in the sand.

imageIt was a massage chair with a foot bath – it was so cool. We made a wall and some chairs out of sand. The water came and filled up our foot bath.

 

 

We walked a long way up a big big hill to see the windiest street in the whole entire world. Then we found a park – it was a really cool park and we didn’t want to leave.

imageBut we had to walk to China town and we met my mum’s cousin Simon who lives here in San Francisco but he is not on holidays – he works here but we are on holidays. Then we walked to a Chinese shop and had a yummy dinner. We tried to get a maxi taxi but there weren’t any – just those tiny ones with 4 seats, so we walked to the train again and then we went back to Nancy’s house.
Love from Emilio.

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