“Oh, the Places You’ll Go!” – Dr. Seuss
Many years ago when my mother was a flight attendant for Pan Am, my grandmother gave her the Dr. Seuss book, “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!” When I was young I read that book repeatedly, wondering where life would take me and dreaming of all of the amazing things other countries had to offer. I’ve always loved traveling because it gives me a chance to experience other cultures, meet exciting people and open my mind to all of the possibilities of the world. My journeys have taken me to Canada, Mexico, Netherlands, Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg, Italy, Switzerland, Austria, Monaco and Spain.
I recently completed my second year of my undergraduate degree at UCLA. Not only did I see improvement in my own academic performance (maybe I worked harder this year, or maybe I finally figured out how to jump through the hoops that the UC system holds up), but I also saw a drastic increase in my level of happiness.
This year was a really defining one for me, in that I went out and experienced a lot more that I had during my first year in LA, and I think that generally resulted in a better understanding of myself and of the world around me. I decided in early march that I wanted spontaneity to be one of my most prominent characteristics, so I started making everyday decisions in a spontaneous manner rather than planning them out as I’ve done for the last 20 years. In the last week of April I decided to take a trip to New York, so I booked the cheapest ticket I could find (a middle-seat red-eye) and hopped on a plane to JFK just 10 days later.
Some of you might be thinking “10 days? That’s not spontaneous, that’s just a rip-off”. Well, if you know me at all you know that my trip planning takes place months, if not an entire year, in advance, so 10 days was a huge stride toward the life I was looking for.
The trip went on without any hiccups and ended up being an extreme source of relief and happiness for me amidst a stressful midterm season at UCLA that immediately preceded an even worse finals season. I’d call it a successful quarter because I made it out with all of my limbs and relatively good grades, but the most important part of Spring Quarter 2017 was that I learned a lot about myself and that I made active lifestyle changes that helped set me on the right path for a happier future!
On July 1st I will be embarking on a two month trip to New York City, during which time I’ll be exploring the art scene, enjoying the sweltering sunshine, and trying to find a cup of coffee that rivals Portland’s! I’ll also be taking a Fashion Industry class at Parsons School of Fashion, Art and Design to help further my knowledge and develop my skills as a fashion photographer. Stay tuned for updates on my adventures and some sneak peaks of my upcoming photography projects!