“P” is for People and Openness

It’s funny to look back now and think about the time when we were teenagers and we assumed that we thought we knew more about the world than what we actually did. It took a few years of traveling, going to college, working or other life changes that commonly come after attending high school to [...]

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“O” is for Ocean

On the final weekend of my month long stay in Italy I decided to take off by myself to Cinque Terre. There I would explore the five towns of Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore along the coast of the Italian Riviera. I signed up for the Florence For Fun program event, which [...]

“N” is for Napoletana

I was absolutely nervous before my 17-hour flight to Italy from LAX. Watching my parents and my sister wave goodbye to me (for what very could have been the last time) nearly forced the tears welling up in my tear ducts to fall out onto my face. I couldn’t stand flying. Flying meant making deals [...]

“M” is for Milan

Loud noises consisting of people yelling in all different languages filled the Italian train station as I took cover from the excruciating heat. I had nothing but my ratty purse, well spent from traveling, and a backpack for my weekend trip to Barcelona, Spain. Written down on a piece of binder paper were walking directions [...]

L is for the Locals

A visitor drives in from over the Grapevine and into the thin layer of smog covering the lid of the Central Valley that has been collected from cites all over. The non-local knows only of what he has been told. For the strange new face, Bakersfield is this mystic town filled with locals riding horses [...]

“K” is for Kayaking

The bright yellow mass is carried to the edge of the shore. Together, we drop the two-person kayak into the water and push it further into the bay. My sister and I guide the vessel past the small tides letting our bare feet leave the hot sand and follow it into the cold water. We [...]

“J” is for Junk

A loud crash of boxes startles me and my heart skips a beat. I notice that the alarming sound has come from the closet that I used while I was in high school. No really one goes into my old room unless I’m visiting my friends and family in Bakersfield, so I’m curious to see [...]

“I” is for Irony

A towering inferno grows out from underneath the cubicles of the modern-style office. The blaze melts the computers on the desks and burns the stacks of pages lying around like a box of gasoline soaked matches. There I stood in the middle of the chaotic scene with my tote bag in tow. I peered out [...]

“H” is for Hypnotist

There I was, sitting in the back of a room full of people with their eyes closed. The conference room was filled with people who had gathered from all over to hear the author of their favorite self-help book speak. I had my eyes open because I have this thing about closing my eyes in [...]

“G” is for Grad School

Everyone thinks they have an idea about what grad school is going to be like. They know that they will end up writing. A Lot. They know that there is a ton of research involved, and that they will be able to focus on the academic subject that they really care about.  But what they [...]