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Personal Experience: Home is Where the Heart Is

explanatory Essay
1326 words
1326 words
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I was first introduced to the scenic, exotic, and, unpredictable city of New Orleans as a seventh grader in middle school, at the young age of thirteen-years old. Going on a decision made by group majority, we settled on exploring the city for a weekend on a trip we made from our basecamp in Biloxi, Mississippi, our home at that time.
I first traveled to the Gulf Coast from Boston, Massachusetts during the month of June, for three weeks. We were on a mission trip to help rebuild, gut, and or clean whichever home or field we were sent to after the disastrous Hurricane Katrina had caused ruin through the region, however, not that weekend, that weekend was for appreciation and sightseeing. Our days were spent absorbing beautiful architecture, catching glimpses of cultures come together like no other place, and, of course, trying every possible local cuisine before we became stuffed. After exploring the area in and around New Orleans, and later falling for the city, I made sure to participate on the annual voyage to the region.
On my third and final mission trip, my freshman year of high school, the church that sponsored our trip from Massachusetts to the region was conveniently located a few short miles out of the city of New Orleans. We were to work directly with the people affected by the breaking of the levees. The words “flabbergasted” and “dumbfounded” did not, and still fail to describe my reaction to witnessing the conditions in which some people continued to live, even five years after the storm had arrived and gone.
Being desperate to return to the city of New Orleans for the first two years of my annual trips, I was caught in an utter state of awe at what I discovered after my wish was finally realized on the third time...

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...ght I was, and as David Mamet writes, “that is whom I [pretended] to be” (The Cabin, 123). I find that no two people are alike and everyone has their own reasons and stories for being in such a distinguished city. I am proud to share a city with people who lost most, if not all, material possessions but managed to cling on to their love for something bigger than they. The Woodwrights may not know it, but it is by their grace and their mere existence that I am where I am today. Sure, they did not guide me through high school, but they were always the voice and the instinct, either in my mind or in my heart, or both, to search for schools in New Orleans, and return to where I belonged.

Works Cited

Bolaño, Roberto. Between Parentheses. New York: Penguin Books Canada, 2011. Print.

Mamet, David. The Cabin: Reminiscence and Diversions. New York: Vintage, 1993. Print.

In this essay, the author

  • Describes how they were introduced to the scenic, exotic, and unpredictable city of new orleans as a seventh grader in middle school, at the young age of thirteen.
  • Describes how they traveled to the gulf coast after hurricane katrina. they were on a mission trip to rebuild, gut, and clean whichever home or field they were sent to.
  • Describes their reaction to witnessing the conditions in which some people continued to live, even five years after the storm.
  • Describes how they were awed by the city's people, food, ambiance, and pride. they remember the woodwrights' passionate stories about their struggles after the hurricane and their genuine expressions of love.
  • Narrates how the cliques unraveled from their nervous first kiss, memorable first date, prom night, and so forth. once they got to august 29, 2005, the fear they had felt returned.
  • Narrates how the woodwright's defended their city without losing their composure, when they were clearly offended. their pride in being citizens of new orleans resonated with them for the rest of the trip.
  • Compares their thoughts of home to those of the woodwright's, stating that they were proud of their colombian nationality.
  • Opines that going to colombia opened up their eyes and led them to the epiphany that, likewise, they are not enough to be all the colombian that they thought they were.
  • Describes new orleans as a melting pot of america, and describes how the city's residents embraced the disaster to make it more beautiful.
  • Describes how they have never felt so at peace, so in love with the surroundings around them. no two people are alike and everyone has their own reasons and stories for being in such a distinguished city.
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