In my 20 years on this Earth, I haven't had the opportunity to travel across continents and oceans to a satisfying degree. When I was younger, I went on family vacations to various places around the country. My only venture outside the United States so far has been a brief foray into Canada, and it was only to catch a plane. My parents' reasoning on this was that they wanted my brother and me to experience our own country some before exploring beyond its borders.

In front of the Washington Monument

When I was much younger, we took trips to such places as Chesapeake Bay and Texas. In the summer of 1999 we traveled to the Pacific Northwest, where we drove through Washington, Oregon and northern California, taking in the scenery along the way. That was the first major trip I have any significant memories of. Perhaps the greatest adventure of my early vacations was our trip to Alaska in the summer of 2001. We saw much of the habitable portion of state on a five-day land tour. It was pretty unbelievable to experience nights when the sun set at 11 p.m. and rose at 1 a.m. After that, we took a seven-day cruise with Holland-America cruise line. It was exciting and exhausting at the same time, and it was something that I will never forget.

However, that is not the travel experience that I will discuss in the greatest detail. Instead, I will focus on a spring break trip I took with two friends to Washington, D.C. In the spring of 2007, we planned a road trip to the nation's capital. It was my first venture far away from home without my parents. While we were in D.C., we toured several of the Smithsonian museums, the U.S. Capitol and most of the obligatory national monuments. It was awe-inspiring and humbling to actually see these symbols of America's history in person.

Although this trip wasn't epic in duration or distance, it did give me an even greater hunger to see the world. I hope to travel in the near future because I fear that I may not do it for decades if I don't do it while I am still unanchored. College presents the perfect time for me to fulfill my goals; I just need to find the motivation to get working on it. As the quote at the top of the page says, those who don't travel the world see only a page of the book. I hope to read as much of the book that is the world as possible in my lifetime.

The U.S. Capitol Building My friends and me standing in front of the White House The Lincoln Memorial The Marine Corps War Memorial Arlington National Cemetery